Celebrities live in the glare of spotlights most of the time, their habits, their personal lives, their likes and dislikes, everything about them is examined minutely, reported and analyzed by reporters, fans and public. Their behavior appears larger than life, exaggerated and abnormal. Not only the celebrity, but also people connected with him or her have to live in a glass bowl under the glare of the spotlight. Michael Jordan comes under the category of super celebrity, a professional basketball player with a huge fan following all over the world. His actions inside and outside the basketball court are watched by thousand eyes. When he divorced his first wife, Juanita Jordan, in 2006, the news went viral and for days at end, both printed and electronic media scrutinized everything, trying to look for juicy titbits of gossip, but there was nothing to report except the amount of alimony Juanita received. After the divorce Juanita dropped out of the public gaze, Michael Jordan, at the age of 51 became more famous and adored.
The wives of celebrities, when they are divorced, disappear from public radar, they are still followed by few hardy reporters who want to know the intimate details of the life of the celebrity, but generally they are left in peace. What happens to the divorced wives of celebrities, do they miss the glamour of fame, do they feel bitter; miss the VIP treatment they received as wives of famous people. These questions are left unanswered. It would be interesting to know what Juanita Jordan feels after her divorce. Does she feel resentful, harbors grudges or has she moved on with her life, developed her identity, and discovered interests that are not connected with her famous ex husband.
Juanita Vancy Jordan, after her divorce from Michael Jordan in 2006, has moved on with her life. She lives a peaceful and ordinary life, away from the gaze of the public; she said in a rare interview, that she is in a good place. After her divorce, she refused several lucrative offers to tell all. She says that she had resigned from all boards and charities she supported when she was married to Michael. She says that she has deliberately disappeared from public gaze, simplified her life and looked at basic things, her children and her friends. She looked after the children, and thanks to her down to earth upbringing all three, two boys and a girl, developed their own identities. Friends say that Juanita is a strong person who has never forgotten her humble beginning, despite the trapping of luxurious life she lived with Michael. She brought up her children to develop their own identities, based on hard work, away from the shadow of their famous father. Both boys have opted to follow a career that is not connected with professional basketball.
Juanita Vancy Jordan has also moved away from the high profile life she was forced to live when she was married to her famous husband. She learned Yoga, discovered the simple pleasure of travelling for fun, countries in Europe and Africa became her favorite and frequent destinations. She is interested in raising funds for her favorite charities, mentoring teenage girls and is planning to start a foundation that looks after women and children. She says that she is inspired after her divorce by three strong women, Hillary Clinton, Jackie Kennedy and Oprah Winfrey. All three suffered adversities in their marriages and personal lives, but went on to become stronger and developed distinct identities of their own. She still talks to her ex husband sometimes; they talk when they need to discuss things connected with their children.
Michael Jordan, on the other hand, has become more famous, more rich, adored and worshiped by his fans and has married again in 2013. A video was shot to celebrate his 50th birthday, show cased Michael at his best in 50 great games he played. It is called Top Play, and even after a year people still watch it on YouTube. In the video Michael is shown wearing Jersey number 23 and effortlessly leaping, dodging, and scoring, on fifty occasions, accompanied by the roars of the crowd. The comments made by the commentators on the occasions were also recorded. One commentator gushed that Michael is some guy, ‘lots of guys have skills, but no guy has this level of artistry’, another said, ‘Unbelievable,’ ‘Greatest player of all time’. One announcer called him vintage superstar, another says, ‘MJ at his best at Fifty. Very few people on this planet can do it’.
Michael Jordan has it all, gushing admiration, pots of money and an adoring fan following. On the other hand Juanita Jordan has her own simple life, satisfaction in seeing her children growing up as responsible human beings not overwhelmed by their father’s wealth and fame. Whose life is better, the choice is not so simple, there are many answers; each depends on the values and personalities of the person who is answering this question.