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Bret Michaels to Oprah: Crisis shows what's important

Bret Michaels, continuing his rehabilitation from the brain hemorrhage that put him in critical condition last month, told Oprah Winfrey Wednesday that his ordeal solidified in his mind the primacy of family and friends.

"It puts things in perspective real quickly," he said on Oprah's talk show via satellite from Phoenix, where he is recovering. "You instantly put into your life what matters the most at that exact time. . . . It is your immediate family, your kids, your best friends. At that point, you're not thinking about anything else. You're not thinking about career. . . . You're thinking, 'Let me live through this.' . . . The only thing that matters right now is taking care of my family and my kids, and thanking God I'm still alive to talk about it."

Michaels, 47, said he hopes to attend Sunday night's live finale of NBC's "Celebrity Apprentice," where he and actress Holly Robinson-Peete became the two finalists on Sunday's edition, taped months ago. An NBC spokeswoman did not return a Newsday call for comment.

Michaels' daughter Raine, 9, one of his two children with on-again/off-again girlfriend Kristi Gibson, also appeared on the show via tape. "To think that my dad wouldn't be growing up with me . . . was just really heartbreaking," she said.

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