Don’t know who Diana Nyad is?
Neither did I. But then, I don’t follow the sport of marathon swimming.
I’m reading her autobiography, Find A Way. I bought the hardback based solely on the cover. That’s a rarity for me. But the title is so appealing, and then there’s a woman swimmer with her clenched fists raised in the air. Who could resist that?
(The cover on the paperback is different. See? New York publishers sometimes change their mind.)
When Nyad was sixty-four years old, she achieved her lifelong dream. She is the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without the aid of a shark cage. She swam 111 miles in fifty-three hours.
No, she could not—and did not—sleep. She stopped for fuel to keep her going. According to the rules, she couldn’t get out of the water.
Sharks were a constant fear.
When she finished, she spoke to the crowd in Key West and said these words:
- Never, ever give up.
- You’re never too old to chase your dreams.
- It looks like a solitary sport, but it’s a Team.
She lives by these rules. This was her fifth try to swim from Havana to Key West.
Remember, she was sixty-four years old.
That’s why Hillary Clinton said, “When you’re facing big challenges in life, you can think of Diana Nyad…and anything else seems doable.”
In comparison, my own challenges are now looking doable.