*I know I was on a ‘proposals roll.’ But…*
The above picture was taken yesterday evening at the University of Lagos Sports Center.
I had gone there at about 4:20 to take pictures of a sports event and when it was 4:55, it started to drizzle. Also, around that time, a blind athlete (in the neon vest) walked onto the tracks with his training partner. I had never seen such before- a blind man running. Yes, maybe it was not totally unbelievable to me. But I’d just never seen it before. I was both amazed and impressed.
They started training and when it started raining, I felt sorry that they’d have to stop training. I went up to where the stadium seats were because the rain had started to fall quite heavily. And as incredibly hot as I am, believe it or not, I started shivering and clattering my teeth. I couldn’t stay still and I felt like I was going to start to convulse.
In fact, at some point, I couldn’t sit on any of the seats because the wind kept blowing the rain everywhere. I had a camera and a chest to protect. So I moved up and stood with the rest of the people. Everyone was shaking and people were hugging each other. At some point, the wind started blowing ME aroun and there was even a case of an asthmatic attack (which the young man in question had not experienced for years prior to yesterday).
I was beginning to get worried as the end of the rain was not in sight and it only got heavier. I tried to busy my mind with other things aside from the rain. Maybe, then, I would not notice how cold I was. So I looked around me.
Suddenly, my eyes caught something on the tracks. It was either I could not clearly see because of the rain or my mind could not clearly process the wonder I was beholding. The the blind man and his training partner NEVER stopped training?
I pushed through the crowd and moved down the rows of seats, not even noticing the tiny drops of rain dropping on me. It was one of the most amazing things as well as one of the most challenging things I’d ever seen.
As I stared at them running, stopping, tying laces, jogging, supporting each other under such heavy rain, I could only think about the stupidity in the excuses I give not to do what I ought to.
He had such a valid excuse not to even practice and an even more valid one not to practice under such terrible conditions. But he focused, not on the varying factors that may come and go, but on his fixed desire to practice.
I was also tripped by his trainer. She probably would never be known worldwide (or even locally) as the young girl who trains this blind man under the heavy rain and scorching sun. And God knows, she may even be a member of his family. Or in the wildest imaginations, she may be paid to do it. But still, it takes all the passion, interest and a good heart to do what she’s doing.
I may not have been able to really express what seeing both of them did to my thinking, but I hope that anyone who reads this or sees the pictures would have a sound understanding of dedication, perseverance, determination and love.
Tags: athletics, blind, daring, determination, disability, encouragement, excuses, focus, helper, Love, motivational, partner, perseverance, sports, support
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Awesome. Life changing. Unforgettable Challenge.
Thanks for sharing this award-winning piece.
very perceptive ‘Deboro…thanks for sharing
Very vivid and motivational.
Keep it up higher.
It’s certainly opened my eyes to something…
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