Find A WayBook - 2015
Hillary Clinton said that Find a Way would stay with her through the general election: "When you're facing big challenges in your life, you can think about Diana Nyad getting attacked by the lethal sting of box jellyfishes. And nearly anything else seems doable in comparison."
On September 2, 2013, at the age of sixty-four, Diana Nyad emerged onto the sands of Key West after swimming 111 miles, nation to nation, Cuba to Florida, in an epic feat of both endurance and human will, in fifty-three hours. Diana carried three poignant messages on her way across this stretch of shark-infested waters, and she spoke them to the crowd in her moment of final triumph:
1. Never, ever give up.
2. You're never too old to chase your dreams.
3. It looks like a solitary sport, but it's a Team.
Millions of people around the world cheered this maverick on, moved by her undeniable tenacity to be the first to make the historic crossing without the aid of a shark cage. At the end of her magnificent journey, after thirty-five years and four crushing failures, the public found hope in Diana's perseverance. They were inspired by her mantra--find a way--that led her to realize a dream in her sixties that had eluded her as a young champion in peak form.
In Find a Way, Diana engages us with a unique, passionate story of this heroic adventure and the extraordinary life experiences that have served to carve her unwavering spirit.
Diana was a world champion in her twenties, setting the record for swimming around Manhattan Island, along with other ocean-swim achievements, all of which rendered her a star at the time. Back then, she made the first attempt at the Mount Everest of swims, the Cuba Swim, but after forty-two hours and seventy-nine miles she was blown desperately off course. Her dream unfulfilled, she didn't swim another stroke for three decades.
Why, at sixty-four, was she able to achieve what she could not at thirty? How did her dramatic failures push her to success? What inner resources did Diana draw on during her long days and nights of training, and how did the power of the human spirit trump both the limitations of the body and the forces of nature across this vast, dangerous wilderness? This is the gripping story of an athlete, of a hero, of a bold mind. This is a galvanizing meditation on facing fears, engaging in our lives full throttle, and living each day with no regrets.
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From the critics
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Absolutely incredible. At the end of this book, Nyad writes, in her author's notes,
"Eighty percent of what I wrote isn't in the book, but the pursuit of recalling a lifetime of experiences proved to be one of the most illuminating things I've ever done. Perspective of what was in the end important surfaced. Gratitude for this rocket ship of a life I've gotten to live overwhelmed me."
This book is so much more than the quest to reach Florida from Cuba as an open water swimmer, it is a true example of the relationship between the journey and the destination; the motivation, the struggle, the fear, the emotion and the dedication that it takes to reach a life goal and to summon every ounce of determination that one has in order to carry on, in spite of the inclination (and that of surrounding individuals) to give up.
Through the story of five attempts, Nyad also provides readers with a history of her life: a terrifying childhood, the barriers for female athletes, her difficult relationships with family and her desire to "engage" with her life. It is a true life review and it is beautiful to read.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys powerful memoirs, needs a push of inspiration/motivation and/or understands the journey that is required to work toward a goal; in addition, I must mention that there are some incredible pictures included within the hard copy. For those of you who participate in sports, like running, that lend themselves to chafing, you will not believe what she endured, as seen in some of the pictures (don't worry - they're not gross!) included in the book.
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