Diana Nyad is 65 years old. At 64, she swam 100 miles from the coast of Cuba to Florida. After having tried 5 times, once when she was only 29 years old. Surely that second time at 63, she thought “my body is too old for this. There’s no way I can do this now if I couldn’t do it when I was so young.” Surely she felt like it was impossible. And yet still, she got up one day and began to train again.
The very act of trying is a declaration of hope. The very act of getting up every day, though you’ve struggled with your weight, your work, your addiction for years is an act of faith that says “I may not see how, and it has never been any different than it is now, but maybe, just maybe, today is the day that something will change. Today is the day that I will finally break through.”
During her journey, Nyad travelled for two entire nights in the pitch blackness. Two nights when she couldn’t see her hand in front of her face, when she had no idea what dangers were lurking around her in the water poised to attack. And sometimes, we too travel in the darkness. Sometimes we have no idea where we are going or what we are doing, where the next dollar will come from, how we will get through the next day or over the next obstacle, or how our problem will ever be solved. But that is the time, in the utter deadness around us, when we must take one step, just one step in the direction we know we should, and then another, and then another. Who knows, maybe in one minute, the lights will come up, and the horizon will appear, and we will finally put our foot down on that ever elusive shore.