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Today is Jayne Torvill’s birthday.

Bolero 2014

Bolero 2014

(It is also Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Simon Cowell’s birthday, oh yes and my friend Debbie’s too.)
My friends clearly know that I am obsessed with Jayne Torvill (and I can already see them rolling their eyes!)
When I was young, I wanted to be Jayne Torvill and so I set my sights on winning an Olympic Gold medal (yes, seriously! Or so I thought)
Sadly, although now with no regrets, I never got to fulfill my dreams of getting to the Olympics, never mind winning a gold medal.

1984 Gold medal winners

1984 Gold medal winners

With hindsight, and the wisdom of old(er) age, I now know why I never fulfilled my dreams.  That was because although my dreams were my own, they were based on somebody else’s success.
The thing about Jayne Torvill and her partner Christopher Dean was that they did the opposite of what I did – they didn’t try to copy anybody.  They were innovators who were absolutely unique in their style and their artistry.  And that is why 31 years later, they are still considered the greatest in their field.

So, I messed up my ice skating career but I became a passionate Occupational Therapist as a direct result of my failed skating endeavours.
And since then I have never again followed any path that has been well used.
I always do things differently and in my own unique way.

Every one of us is special and unique.
There is absolutely no reason why we should spend our lives either trying to copy other people or to live up to the expectation of others.
Find your own path, do things the way that you think they should be done.
Don’t be afraid to walk on the path less traveled.
Be brave!
Do it anyway!

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

– Robert Frost