Photo Credit: communitytable.com
All too often people think of reasons why they can’t do something, instead of believing in all the reasons why they can. The difference between a pessimist and optimist may be less about character, and more about the environment we find ourselves enshrouded in. The media drowns us in all the terrible things that are happening in the world around us; crime, corruption, pollution…. Justin Bieber.
All of that negativity can give us a view of the world (and subsequently ourselves) as being in a state of hopelessness. But every so often a story is brought to the forefront that washes away the filth and shows the heroic and incredible persona of humanity; here are a couple of those incredible stories.
Ben Underwood was born in 1992 and passed away in 2009. He was born with retinal cancer, and at age 3 Doctors had to remove his eyes. The loss of sight did not stop Ben from learning how to play basketball, ride a skateboard, play video games, and get around town without assistance. These seemingly impossible feats were made possible because Ben started to make clicking noises with his mouth, and could listen back for the echo in order to hear the world around him. Stop and think about the word impossible; then think of Ben.
He had lost his eyes to cancer and taught himself echolocation in order to navigate his surroundings. Not unlike the melon that sits atop a dolphin head; Ben became so adapted to echolocation that the area of his Brian normally used for sight had rewired itself for auditory processing giving him something no ordinary human has ever experienced; a world seen through sound. Next time you think a diet is too hard, that your boss is giving you too much work, or that an obstacle standing in the way is impossible; remember Ben, and rethink the meaning of impossible. Click here to see the video. [336_mobile_top]
Rick Hoyt was born with cerebral palsy; he is quadriplegic and speaks only through the assistive technology of a computer. He told his father in 1977 that he wanted to participate in a 5-mile benefit run for a benefit for another boy who had been recently paralyzed. His father Dick had never done a marathon before, but agreed to push his son completing the full 5-mile trek. After the marathon Rick told his father “Dad, when I’m running, it feels like I’m not handicapped.”
Thanks to his dad, Rick has now ran in over 1,000 different races, all with Dick pushing his son and sometimes pulling him with a bungee cord attached to his chest. They go buy the moniker of Team Hoyt and prove true their motto of “You Can”. Whenever you feel you can’t accomplish something think of Team Hoyt and believe that YOU CAN!
Holy heavy mental load Batman! I’m sorry, I know; thinking of a paraplegic and retinal cancer survivor may be a bit of a downer, but it should also serve as a major motivator to your life if you are willing to look at it the way I hope you do. Yes; life can sometimes be crazy, unfair, and difficult. No matter how bad things get; the way we choose to face our trials and tribulations ultimately determine the type of person we are. So don’t ever back down from a challenge, and conquer that which seeks to break you down in life, find the incredible story inside yourself and remember NOTHING is impossible!