I met the most amazing woman a few weeks ago. She was in her 30’s, mousey hair, overweight but she had the biggest smile I’ve ever seen. Two years prior, she had also lost her newborn baby son, five-year-old daughter and husband to a speeding driver.
Her name is Abby Rike and she was a contestant on America’s ‘The Biggest Loser’ show.
Those of you who have seen the show will know exactly who I mean. Her story is so unbelievably shocking you’d be forgiven for thinking it’s not true. But it is.
I can relate to Abby on some level. When Mum died I felt a similar disconnection to the world that Abby talks of. Going through the daily motions but not really living. Existing. And it was a reconnection to life that Abby was really looking for on the show; the weight loss was a fortunate by-product.
I screamed at the TV last night when she sacrificed herself for the sake of her team members because, as much as she felt she had gotten what she needed, she deserved to be there to the end. Just because.
I wish I knew her personally. There aren’t many people who come into your life, even if it is via the television, that make you stop and appreciate how very lucky you are. She’s one of them. A true inspiration. She believes so totally in living her life the best way that she can, no matter what, that she is prepared to move past the horror of that driver wiping out her entire family. That she can even get up every morning astounds me. That she wants to reconnect with the world and live again astounds me even more.
The next time I moan about wet towels on the floor, treading on the Lego again or the milk being left out, I’ll try my best to think of Abby and just take a deep breathe – before I shout at the culprit!
Because, as Abby has proved, life does go on.