Imagine this if you can: A boy who is blind is a skilled skateboarder, among many other things.
Oftentimes it takes a light tap on the shoulder - or a slap in the face - to put things in perspective and bring a brighter note to our seemingly difficult times. One such tap is the story of Ben Underwood, a young boy who, due to the onset of cancer, has been blind since the age of three.
While this difference could - and certainly has - limited the goals, dreams, and daily activities of many, this particular case was different. Not only did Ben decide at age six that he was through using a cane, but three years before he began using a technique called echolocation, the same method used by bats and dolphins to perceive their environments.
It soon became apparent that Ben’s skills were off the charts, even called ’extraordinary’ and ’pushing the limits of human perception’ by medical doctors. Simply by using a series of clicks and gauging the time it takes for the sound to return and in exactly what fashion, he can operate in the world like any other child.
He skateboards, plays kickball with the neighborhood kids, and even chases down his brother to return a sneak-attack tackle. Ben can even tell the difference between a parked car and truck, all through the use of clicks with his mouth. Simply amazing.
Ben Underwood has an amazing ability –and more amazingly he took a weakness and turned it into a source of creativity, skill, and strength. He didn’t dwell, nor did he accept a state of life below his desires. Instead, he accepted the facts and moved forward with his life.
It’s the example of overcoming adversity that I want you to take to heart. If a young boy can function and maneuver without the use of his eyes, can’t you find a way to overcome your challenges? Can’t you find a way to get the things you want and to help those you care about do the same?