became the fifth contestant on Survivor: Fiji
to be voted off last week, after her tribe suffered another demoralizing defeat. Rita stopped by to chat with us earlier today.
How were you cast on Survivor? Was it something you had always wanted to be a part of?
It was something, I'm describing it as something that just came from God to me at a time in life where I had actually been feeling the opposite of Survivor. I had been transitioning from divorce to becoming a single parent who has to solely provide for her children and I'd been struggling quite a bit to get my career going and to provide the financial stability for my kids and I had really started to doubt myself and my ability to survive. Then, as I was out working out in Los Angeles, training one of my kids for the Teen Miss USA pageant, I had been spotted by one of the recruiters for Survivor and she just threw the opportunity out to me. At first I thought “Are you crazy?”
I didn't really know much about Survivor. What I did know was that I was feeling the opposite of that, but because I am very spiritual I stopped and thought “Okay, this is insane that something so opposite of what I'm feeling is landing in my lap, so I've got to take this opportunity and see whats behind it.” So I did, and it was very symbolic for me because it really just confirmed and reminded me that I have what it takes to survive for my children and myself. As I showed it out there. I was voted off, I didn't ask to be taken off, my body did not break down, my mind did not give up. As far as I'm concerned, I'm still a winner on that show.
How old did it get being in the Have-Not camp when you knew the members of the other camp were just living it up?
It was getting old, that's a good way to put it, to the point where we just started making fun of the situation because that was the only thing left for us to do. We had already been through complaining about it and being down about it. And part of my demise was I was trying to keep my tribe's minds entertained and occupied by telling stories that had nothing to do with our situation, because I was so sick and tired by the same “We lost, we're losers, we lost, we're losers, we can't win.” It was just so frustrating to not be able to comprehend or find the solution to why we kept losing.
(Interview Conducted by Oscar Dahl)