I watched him limp around the clinic at various times to get a device for one procedure or another. Merie was a master of his art. The fact that he was physically challenged did not diminish his work because he was never found wanting.
"I have a bright future and God will keep taking me to a higher level," he told me, as we discussed when he finished seeing the patients at hand. It was obvious that he never or rarely thought about his disabilities. He told me about work, his young family, the wife that God blessed him with and how her prayers enabled him secure his a job at a time that getting employed was difficult because of the global economic meltdown.
As I watched and listened to Merie, I seemed to forget most of my headaches because they all appeared to be trivialities. I could walk straight, I could speak and hear well, I was physically alright but just the night before, I stayed awake for several hours thinking about the things I needed to get done. My problems turned to a flash in the pan as I looked at this young man who had to endure a remarkable physical challenge caused by poliomyelitis infection, which he contracted when he was just an infant.
"In my second year in the University, I made up my mind to quit. It was just too unbearable. I was the one training myself." His face was expressionless as he spoke, "My faculty head advised me against it. I persevered by combining studies and petty trading. And the rest is now history."
He had stubbornly refused to join a relative to learn a trade, instead he set up a barber shop to raise funds. "I had to use my little savings to buy a hair clipper.It was from the money I made from my shop, situated under a tree shed that I was able to take my senior school certificate and university matriculation exams."
My mind wandered to the various possibilities that could have taken place in the life of my friend had it been he did not set his mind on his ambition and persevered against all odds. He is an eye doctor today. Indeed, like he says and believes, he has a bright future.
Many of us are more advantaged physically. A great majority of us did not have to toil to train ourselves in the course of higher education. Yet we keep dwelling our minds on the things we do not have. Many times we go about as if life has short changed us. We worry, we play the blame game-forgetting our strengths and the opportunities that life has offered us.
A lot of lessons can be learned from Merie's life: Your present challenge does not mean you are finished, it is just a phase and your attitude as you face it, matters a lot. We would better enjoy our lives when we stop looking at limitations. Whether you are well or physically challenged; whether you are black or white; whether you are wealthy or just surviving or whether you are educated or illiterate- it is never too late to get your fire back and live your best life.
You can start it now by eliminating negative confirmations and limiting thoughts! For a start, you can take a cue from our friend Merie; say it and believe it, "I have a bright future and God will keep taking me to higher level !"
As you face your life and daily tasks with diligence and this kind of positive mindset, it would push you to rise above those limitations that have always held you back.
You have a bright future! You will win!
Picture, courtesy: dreamstime.com