Happy birthday to Judy Garland, star of “The Wizard of Oz”, and singer of what some consider to be the song of the century, “Over the Rainbow.” She would have been 97 today.
She brought happiness to millions, but was never really allowed to be happy herself.
She started performing on stage with her sisters when she was just two and a half years old. Her mother took her all around to perform in Vaudeville acts. When she didn’t want to perform, her mother would threaten to beat her.
When she was ten, her mother introduced her to pills to “pep her up” to go on stage, and then other pills to bring her back down to sleep.
After signing with MGM as a teenager, the studio head called her “The Little Hunchback”, and “The Ugly Duckling.” She was 4’11” tall and slightly overweight, so the studio would allow her only to eat broth and cottage cheese. They had spies assigned to make sure that was all she ate.
Judy Garland was often forced to make two movies at a time, often working until four or five a.m. She relied on pills to provide her energy to bound back the next day.
In her adulthood, she was married five times, and attempted suicide at least five times. At age 47, she overdosed on barbiturates, and died.
If you had a good childhood in which people cared for you, be thankful. Not everyone is so lucky.