I came across an old magazine article over the weekend. You may not remember her name, but you likely remember seeing photos of the young female surfer competing without an arm. Bethany Hamilton was 13 when she lost her arm in a shark attack while surfing in Kauai. After losing 2/3 of her blood, her future was uncertain. Yet 24 days after the attack, Bethany was back on a surfboard. Two years later, she was a national champion.
Bethany’s mindset – her ability to focus on what she could do and what was possible instead of the obstacles and challenges – kept her moving forward. I was struck by the words Bethany gave the interviewer: “My passion for surfing outweighed my fear of sharks. I dreamed of surfing competitively and the loss of my arm didn’t stop that dream.”*