Tuesday, 25 March 2014
When I woke up this morning, I never thought I would be inspired so much by just one individual.
Several days ago I was roped into running a Life Skills event for some young people attached to a group of military personnel. We have all been there before when you start to regret something you previous agreed to and this was my moment.
I don’t know if it was the thought of travelling in the rain or just complete laziness but I was really not too enthusiastic about running today’s event.
When I arrived at the venue there were many more kids than I was previous told about and this kick started my enthusiasm as it is difficult to run a session on positive mental attitude if your body language is nothing but negative.
I started the session and my attention was soon drawn towards an old friend who had beside him a man with a noticeable injury.
After initially touching base with my old buddy, he introduced me to Robert (Bobby). Bobby was caught in an IED attack in the early days of Afghanistan and sustained some serious injuries including the loss of his left leg, the loss of the bottom part of his left arm and some serious damage to the left side of his head and face.
I have a few friends who unfortunately have sustained injuries over the years, but Bobby looked like he had been through a truly horrendous time.
At the end of my event, when the children had been shuffled off to play elsewhere, my mate who invited me to attend whispered in my ear. “This is why I invited you today – enjoy”
To my surprise Bobby was invited to the event to speak to the audience of largely ex-military personnel. He stood up and proceeding to explain to everyone present how he got injured and why he felt the need to attempt to take his own life on 5 separate occasions with success.
The speech was touching and yet he added a huge amount of humour to it to soften the sound of his voice as it entered into the ears of the audience.
He explained that through the nightmare he was living every attempt to end his life failed because he believed he wasn’t his time. “Despite some detailed planning things would go wrong” he said.
Several months ago he was looking in the mirror and comparing his old body to his new, when he realised that against his wishes he was here to stay. He made an assertive decision to stop wasting time being negative and start seeing the positive in what had happened to him.
He gave us some funny examples of positive including being able to get to the bar quickly for a drink as those around him would feel sorry for him, and how when watching his local football team the club treated him like a VIP.
Bobby then started to weep as he told us of his regret at putting his girlfriend through so much pain. He added at the end that she was the reason for him changing his attitude and working with young people.
My ears pricked up as he continued by telling us how he has spent the last few months working with young people who are experiencing a difficult time. He said he runs a POSITIVE MENTAL ATTITUDE course for young people based on his experiences.
Every so often we all meet an individual that makes a profound impact on us. Bobby is a real hero who has now dedicated his time to making those around him realise we can all overcome the biggest hurdles if we have the right mind set.