Many of you who who knew me would probably laugh if I told you that today I took part in the ‘Paralympics Talent Search’. Yep, me – the girl who can’t balance, catch or throw a ball and ambulates on a walking frame.However, I thought I’d give it a shot. When completing the application forms, I too had queried whether it was worth my while and asked if I was kidding myself. However, as a disabled person I’ve never had an opportunity like this to try to pursue new sports or modify how I’d always performed them as an able person. This was an opportunity I may regret if I didn’t zap it up.
As the week passed, my tiredness grew and the prospect of traveling to Albert Park for most of my Saturday when it was cold and raining seemed more and more unlikely. I was reluctant to tell anyone as felt a bit silly for looking into this. However, telling my mum at the last minute forced me to be accountable to attend the event – I couldn’t back down now!
With hindsight, I wonder whether it was worthwhile- the reach tests, ball-skills and beep-test only highlighted my deficits. It only reminded me of my unco- throwing, poor balance and inability to run. However, throughout the event I was surrounded by amazing people – some running on prosthetic limbs and others gliding around the basketball courts freely in their wheelchairs. Individuals that despite there disabilities were striving to pursue new sports and find new challenges in life. To me, their abilities outweighed their disabilities!
I must admit, today was exhausting and a bit of a let down. I guess I secretly hoped that my disability would reveal a strength that I didn’t know I had. However, it taught me the importance of giving things a go and taking up any opportunities that come my way.
There’s no time for regrets in life, try things – you don’t know where it’ll lead you!