My Group Why
In March 2006, my father literally saved my life but there have been many times over the years when I wished that he hadn’t.
You see I was an aspiring rugby player who had played at professional academies and at National Level but unknown to myself I had a potentially life-threatening heart condition, a condition known as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Academically I was always pretty average, a bold statement considering I had to retake my A levels with my sanctum being the rugby pitch as opposed to the classroom.
Rugby was no longer on the trajectory I had envisaged since rupturing my patella tendon and breaking the fibula and tibia bones in my left leg. Resilience, a character trait I relied on allowed a momentary step over the white line only for fitness to prove an issue! My mind knew what it wanted to do but my body would not cooperate.
No matter how many extra sessions or extensive cardiovascular work in the gym my fitness just stagnated. That is when my alternative career came into play… I wanted to become a Royal Marine Commando or Physical Training Instructor with the RAF.
Lets rewind to March 2006… Saturday I argued with my mother about something trivial and stepped up my training in the gym pushing myself to the max! Adrenaline pumping, sweat pouring, I grit my teeth and shifted through the pain barrier.
Sunday I went to sleep late, reading the armed services booklets on my bedside table, ready for the phone call to ensure I was making the right decision. Eight o’Clock Monday morning I awoke to a severe clamping pain across my chest crushing me internally. Lying on the bed holding my mothers hand I looked deep into her piercing brown eyes as horror reflected back. I believed I was going to die…
Earlier I stated “my father saved my life but at times I wished he hadn’t…” If it was not for my father I would not be here writing this account today! He drove me to the doctors surgery “just to be tested and ensure everything is fine” which I reluctantly agreed for the sake of my parents. When the pain disappeared after 10 minutes although felt closer to 10 years I was ready to hit the gym… If I had a cardiac arrest could have been imminent!
I also alluded that I wished my father had not intervened… My identity was completely shattered since being saved. I no longer knew who I was or what meaning and purpose I attached to my life as I now knew it. Emotionally I was broken and held onto horrid feelings of resentment and even hatred towards others.
Many dark times were experienced often wishing to die and put me out of the misery that embraced every waking moment. Along with the uncertainty that my life direction would now bring each day was a torrid struggle. Anything physical that exerted stress upon the body was deemed life-threatening but was all I knew and enjoyed.
Escapism was the best form of defence and a way back to normality. I never really liked partying and considered myself to be someone with a high degree of authenticity and integrity… Did I know the person reflecting back at me in the mirror? No! I hated that reflection but not associating that person with who I was became an opportunity to forget my true self momentarily.
Drinking myself into oblivion and not being overly fussy who I slept with was my way of coping through the deep, dark, and troublesome thoughts. Fighting was another form of defence as it portrayed the masculine, warrior image that bestowed me when a rugby player as an attempt to hold firm to my old identity.
December 9th 2006 my son, Jerome Guyah-Low was born weighing 6lbs. This was my miracle, my reason for living. It was through him that I had to learn how to love, care, and look after not only this small bundle of joy but also myself.
He needed me more than anything else in the world and I started to feel part of something special. Rugby had given me a sense of family, a feel of belonging, exactly what my son provided. Jerome made me open my eyes to a life free of limitations or the need to be defined by life’s challenges. His birth was an opportunity to learn that each difficulty we face is an opportunity to grow.
Focusing on my renewed sense of meaning and purpose it forced me to reflect on a life of possibilities and new beginnings. As Jerome grew and learnt new things I knew at both the conscious and subconscious level that I could break my existing restrictive patterns and beliefs and live a life of renewed excitement. My life was not over… It never was. Just mere closing of one chapter and the opening of the next.
My fuel that ignited the touch paper for “Class of Courage” to be born was a desire to help others “Find their new awesome”. Yes, life-changing trauma never truly leaves us but why make it an anchor, an excuse for stagnation, when theres so much that can be achieved despite ones disability, health and/or disfigurement?
My mission at Class of Courage is for us to be the largest community of individuals who have suffered life-changing physical trauma, health conditions, and/or disfigurements coming together with the sole purpose of making powerful shifts towards being the best versions of ourselves.
My overwhelming vision is to instil a mindset into other like-minded individuals that there is still a wonderful and amazing life to be lived despite experiencing a tragic life-changing event. Class of Courage aims to become the go to community for hundreds of thousands of people across the globe in the next five to ten years.
I welcome people of like-mind and experience to join our interactive community so that we bring as many people together as possible. Everyone has a story to share no matter how insignificant you feel your own experience to be.
It is your story that could resonate and empower someone to take control and look towards living a life of possibility. I want you to share your own experience not only to help others but to be therapeutic for yourself.
Lets maximise engagement through posts, comments, articles and other activities so that everyone is supported, challenged in terms of their thinking, and look towards skyrocketing their lives from where they are to “finding their new awesome”.
Creating an incredible space for people of like-mind and experience to learn and grow together means that you will never feel isolated and misunderstood. I want you to not only feel like there is a life full of possibility but to instil a glowing sense of belief that you have the power deep within to take action and make your dreams a reality…
You are ready to be accountable to your new family as everyone in our community will be rooting for you and witnessing your life explode in new, uncertain, but exciting directions… We want to be there through your challenges, tears, laughter, and joy but ultimately your success is our success as we supercharge our futures together as one.
Developing yourself personally is fundamental. As our community grows we will experience even more accelerated growth as people.
Each persons personal narrative will be raw, powerful, and true allowing us the opportunity to dig deep, reflect and utilise our learnings in magnificently positive ways.
We will learn, support, and challenge each other into creating something far bigger and revolutionary than any other community. Like-minded individuals entering our community will experience accelerated and continual growth as they listen, learn, and action your own strategies for shifting mindset and coping with the darkest hours.
I want everyone to interact, have fun, engage with our posts and one hundred percent be fully themselves. You will no longer be travelling alone but become fully committed and supported towards “Finding Your New Awesome”.
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