…by Prill Boyle
Here\’s a fun game I invented-perfect for the lazy days of summer. I call it “Anything is Possible.”
Try it. You\’ll be amazed at the results.
The game begins by asking a simple question: What is one obstacle that might prevent someone from achieving a dream?
The first time I played, I chose blindness. Then I asked myself, “What dream might a blind person be unable to pursue?” Piloting a plane is the first thing that came to mind. Fully expecting zero results, I googled “blind pilot.”
I was shocked to learn that at least two blind men have become pilots: Steve Cunningham, who lost his sight at age 12; and Miles-Hilton Barber, who has been blind for 25 years. Both use co-pilots, but computer software enables the men to be fully in control.
Okay, I thought, maybe planes have become so high-tech that sight is no longer needed to pilot them. But what about driving? Surely a blind man can\’t drive. So I googled “blind driver.”
To my amazement, I discovered that in 1995, Hein Wagner, a South African who has been blind from birth, broke the record for fastest blind driver. Driving a Maserati, he reached a speed of 167 miles an hour. (Note that the record is for fastest blind driver, not only blind driver.)
Then I googled “blind doctor” and came up with at least five men and women who have become physicians. Two are in rehabilitation medicine, two are psychiatrists, and one is an osteopath.
Deaf musicians? There\’s Evelyn Glennie, an award-winning percussionist; Shawn Dale Barnett, a deaf drummer who passed away in 2003; and, of course, Beethoven.
I found a marathon double-amputee (Clare Forbes), a dyslexic writer (Stephen J. Cannell, author of 11 novels and creator of 21 Jump Street), and a once-destitute millionaire (Chris Gardner, the inspiration for the movie The Pursuit of Happyness). The list goes on and on.
So the next time you catch yourself saying, “I\’m too old, too poor, too busy, too anything” to pursue a goal, think of these folks.
Then ask yourself, “If they can achieve their dreams, why can\’t I?”
Prill Boyle is the author of Defying Gravity: A Celebration of Late-Blooming Women (Emmis Books, 2004). To learn more, go to www.prillboyle.com, or visit Prill\’s blog at http://defyinggravitynow.blogspot.com.