Everyone has to deal with things they dislike. But the things I dislike about my life, shouldn't define who I am. They have to be managed, and they can actually make me stronger. I'm determined to beat the curve in my back, the same way many other people have beat the curves in their lives. Here are some of the people who inspire me:
Sometimes a "deformity" can be like a secret weapon, enabling you to do things other people can't imitate. "I was born with this condition. It’s a curvature of the spine in the shape of an 'S'. It caused one of the glands in my neck to not grow correctly, hence the slight tilt of my head that makes me look like I have a stiff neck all the time. When I was 5 years old, my dad took me to the hospital to see if they could correct it. They said there was a 50 percent chance the surgery could leave me paralyzed, so we just left it alone. It really hasn’t affected me too much." Read more at http://www.grindtv.com/skateboarding/sacab/… Picture from Sidewalk Magazine.
She was cruelly called The World's Ugliest Woman by internet bullies. Instead of being defeated, Lizzy took a stand to fight bullying. She developed her public speaking skills and has inspired millions around the world. Listen to her TED Talk here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c62Aqdlzvqk Her story has also been made into a movie.
Although her wrists are always bent because of a condition called arthrogryposis multiplex congenital, Rion has decided that nothing is going to keep her down. Listen as she belts out Carrie Underwood's "Blown Away", and brings Simon Cowell to his feet. Here she is on X Factor.
Kyra learned that she had scoliosis at age 10, and at 13 had a spinal fusion with ten vertibrae. But that hasn't stopped her--today she's a national champion rock climber and she'll be the first to tell you that scoliosis isn't getting in her way. She's smart, fun, gifted and totally unstoppable! Check out The Vertical Life of Kyra. �
Zach was diagnosed with a rare bone cancer in 2010, and used music to convey his feelings and love for life. He inspired millions when he wrote and recorded the song Clouds, which which went viral, and hit #1 on iTunes. You'll be inspired by his story My Last Days: Meet Zach Sobiech.
Need a little inspiration? Click on Mandisa's pic below to watch this video and remember, you're an Overcomer. “I recorded both the song and the album to fuel faith, empower people, and remind those facing a battle, that all of the strength, power, and weapons of warfare they need is readily available to them. We are all overcomers,” Mandisa said.
Quoting from the bio page on Stacy's website: "Stacy Lewis is the best story in women's golf because of the things that she's had to overcome in order to just play golf again." She spent 6 1/2 years in a back brace, had back surgery, and then wasn't sure she would even be able to walk again, let alone swing a golf club. In March she won her 7th title and is the #1 LGPA player in the world! She's a spokesperson for the international Scoliosis Research Society. To learn more about Stacy and her incredible story go to Stacysback.com.
Billy McLaughlin is a guitarist with a unique technique--he taps the electric guitar strings and gets a fantastic sound that I've never heard anywhere else. He's famous around the world for his style, and he inspires people everywhere he goes. But it wasn't always that way. In 2001 he was diagnosed with an incurable neuromuscular disease called Focal Dystonia, and could no longer play his guitar. He lost everything. In 2006, he astounded the music world and made a comeback--playing guitar with his left hand! He's on top of the world again, and no matter what the future brings, I think he'll stay there. I recommend seeing him in concert, and when you need some encouragement, go to billymclaughlin.com.
Nick was born in Australia without arms or legs. But that hasn't stopped him from loving life and encouraging others to do the same. As a child he was ostracized, bullied, and thought about suicide at a young age. Reaching deep within, he found something good about himself, discovered that God loved him, and that he had a purpose on this earth. He never looked back.
Today, Nick is married, loving life and speaking to hundreds of thousands of people who are looking for a reason to live. His new book is called Unstoppable: The Incredible Story of Faith in Action; his story is incredible, his message inspiring. An interview with 60 Minutes really puts his perspective, into perspective. One of my favorite stories is about his little chicken drumstick.
Jenny Atkinson holds 19 timber sport World Championship medals, and has been ranked #1 in the world FOUR times! She always wears pink to logrolling tournaments, because she's a breast cancer survivor. She's an outspoken advocate for breast cancer awareness. She's beat cancer, and now she's fighting back by sharing her story and educating everyone around her about what to look out for. She's talented, fun, outgoing and her story inspires me.
Shana Verstegen is an amazing athlete, lumberjill, personal trainer, and model. She's competed as a professional logroller since 1997, is a 5-time WORLD logrolling and boom running champion, and has been featured on ESPN and Outdoor Life Network. She's also a spokesperson for Huntington's Disease, a devastating, degenerative brain disorder. Her family is directly afffected by HD, and Shana's way of "beating this dragon" is to create awareness of it. Her energy and enthusiasm are contagious, and I love being around her. Shana inspires me to the max! ShanaVerstegen.com