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She Yells For Help After Every Race She Runs Even Though She Wins

She Yells For Help After Every Race She Runs Even Though She Wins

Meet Kayla Montgomery. She’s one of the fastest young distance runners in the country. Oh, yeah, she also just happens to suffer from multiple sclerosis. Instead of letting it hold her back from accomplishing her dreams of running a race, she’s used it as motivation to succeed. Kayla was motivated to thrive where others would crumble. This young girl had that same motivation we all need to beat depression, anxiety, and pain. Get inspired by her tale.

Kayla Grew Up Just Like Any Kid

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    Kayla enjoyed doing all of the things other young girls enjoy doing. She spent time hanging out with friends, playing dress up, and even competing on a travel soccer team. Then, one day, after falling in a soccer game, she noticed something was wrong.

    She was Diagnosed With Multiple Sclerosis

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      After the game, while at home, she began to notice a tingling sensation that started in her toes and worked it’s way up her legs. Before she knew it, Kayla could no longer feel her legs. After multiple visits to the doctor with scans and MRIs, the doctors told Kayla and her parents the news: She had multiple sclerosis, or MS.

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      Her Parents and Friends Were Devastated

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        Kayla’s parents and friends were devastated – and so was she. She spent days and weeks by herself wondering, “Why me?” It was an impossible question for anyone to answer – let alone her parents.

        Kayla Decided to Enjoy Life Anyways!

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          After the initial shock wore off, Kayla decided that she should make the best of her situation and enjoy the time she has with an able and functioning body. In addition to eating healthy and staying active, Kayla decided to compete again. With contact sports out of the question (per doctor’s orders), she decided to pursue distance running.

          One Special Coach Pushed Her to the Limit

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            That’s when she met Coach Cromwell – the man that would change the trajectory of her young life. Despite being what he would call an “average” runner when first joining the JV team, Kayla blossomed underneath Coach Cromwell’s guidance and encouragement. He would regularly tell Kayla,

            “I want you to run. I want you to run fast. And I don’t want you to hold back.”

            Even Though She Can’t Feel Her Legs

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              Kayla tried her best to run fast, despite the fact that she couldn’t even feel her legs. Since heat triggers MS symptoms it causes short-term flare ups in which symptoms become rather extreme. Every time Kayla runs, her legs go numb; however, her coach is always there to catch her at the finish line.

              Kayla Became the Best on the Team

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                Over time, Kayla built up her endurance, learned to fight through the strange sensation of not being able to feel her legs, and quickly became the fastest runner on the team. She even started training with the boy’s team.

                Then Kayla Became the Best in the State

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                  The story doesn’t stop there. Kayla wasn’t satisfied with just being the best distance runner on the team. She wanted to be the best in the state. So, in the final match of her senior year, she faced off with North Carolina’s best high school distance runners in the state meet. Despite falling on the first lap, she picked herself up and raced to a first-place finish.

                  Her Coach is Always There to Catch Her

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                    When Kayla finished, guess who was there to catch her? That’s right – Coach Cromwell. Like every race, her coach, mentor, and friend was there to pick her up and help her regain the feeling in her legs.

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                    Awareness for Multiple Sclerosis

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                      Multiple sclerosis is a very serious disease that deserves more attention and funding. Currently, an estimated 2.5 million people worldwide (400,000 people in the United States) suffer from MS.

                      Learn more by visiting the National Multiple Sclerosis Society’s website.

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                      Anna Johansson

                      Anna specializes in entrepreneurship, technology, and social media trends.

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                      Last Updated on July 3, 2020

                      30 Small Habits To Lead A More Peaceful Life

                      30 Small Habits To Lead A More Peaceful Life

                      In today’s world, true peace must come from within us and our own actions. Here are 30 small things you can do on a regular basis to increase your overall sense of harmony, peace, and well-being:

                      1. Don’t go to every fight you’re invited to

                      Particularly when you’re around those who thrive on chaos, be willing to decline the invitation to join in on the drama.

                      2. Focus on your breath

                      Throughout the day, stop to take a few deep breaths. Keep stress at bay with techniques such as “square breathing.” Breathe in for four counts, hold for four counts, then out for four counts, and hold again for four counts. Repeat this cycle four times.

                      3. Get organized and purge old items

                      A cluttered space often creates a cluttered spirit. Take the time to get rid of anything you haven’t used in a year and invest in organizational systems that help you sustain a level of neatness.

                      4. Stop yourself from being judgmental

                      Whenever you are tempted to have an opinion about someone else’s life, check your intentions. Judging others creates and promotes negative energy.

                      5. Say ‘thank you’ early and often

                      Start and end each day with an attitude of gratitude. Look for opportunities in your daily routine and interactions to express appreciation.

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                      6. Smile more

                      Even if you have to “fake it until you make it,” there are many scientific benefits of smiling and laughing. Also, pay attention to your facial expression when you are doing neutral activities such as driving and walking. Turn that frown upside down!

                      7. Don’t worry about the future

                      As difficult as this sounds, there is a direct connection between staying in the present and living a more peaceful life. You cannot control the future. As the old proverb goes, “Worry is like a rocking chair. It gives you something to do, but it won’t get you anywhere.” Practice gently bringing your thoughts back to the present.

                      8. Eat real food

                      The closer the food is to the state from which it came from the earth, the better you will feel in eating it. Choose foods that grew from a plant over food that was made in a plant.

                      9. Choose being happy over being right

                      Too often, we sacrifice inner peace in order to make a point. It’s rarely worth it.

                      10. Keep technology out of the bedroom

                      Many studies, such as one conducted by Brigham and Women’s Hospital, have connected blue light of electronic devices before bed to adverse sleep and overall health. To make matters worse, many people report that they cannot resist checking email and social media when their cell phone is in reach of their bed, regardless of the time.

                      11. Make use of filtering features on social media

                      You may not want to “unfriend” someone completely, however you can choose whether you want to follow their posts and/or the sources of information that they share.

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                      12. Get comfortable with silence

                      When you picture someone who is the ultimate state of peace, typically they aren’t talking.

                      13. Listen to understand, not to respond

                      So often in conversations, we use our ears to give us cues about when it is our turn to say what we want to say. Practice active listening, ask questions, process, then speak.

                      14. Put your troubles in a bubble

                      Whenever you start to feel anxious, visualize the situation being wrapped in a bubble and then picture that sphere floating away.

                      15. Speak more slowly

                      Often a lack of peace manifests itself in fast or clipped speech. Take a breath, slow down, and let your thoughtful consideration drive your words.

                      16. Don’t procrastinate

                      Nothing adds stress to our lives like waiting until the last minute.

                      17. Buy a coloring book

                      Mandala coloring books for adults are becoming more popular because of their connection to creating inner peace.

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                      18. Prioritize yourself

                      You are the only person who you are guaranteed to live with 24 hours a day for the rest of your life.

                      19. Forgive others

                      Holding a grudge is hurting you exponentially more than anyone else. Let it go.

                      20. Check your expectations

                      Presumption often leads to drama. Remember the old saying, “Expectations are premeditated resentments.”

                      21. Engage in active play

                      Let your inner child come out and have some fun. Jump, dance, play, and pretend!

                      22. Stop criticizing yourself

                      The world is a hard enough place with more than enough critics. Your life is not served well by being one of them.

                      23. Focus your energy and attention on what you want

                      Thoughts, words, and actions all create energy. Energy attracts like energy. Put out what you want to get back.

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                      24. Assign yourself “complaint free” days.

                      Make a conscious decision not to complain about anything for a whole day. It might be harder than you think and the awareness will stick with you.

                      25. Surround yourself with people you truly enjoy being in the company of

                      Personalities tend to be contagious, and not everyone’s is worth catching. Be judicious in your choices.

                      26. Manage your money

                      Financial concerns rank top on the list of what causes people stress. Take the time each month to do a budget, calculate what you actually spend and sanity check that against the money you have coming in.

                      27. Stop trying to control everything

                      Not only is your inner control freak sabotaging your sense of peace, it is also likely getting in the way of external relationships as well.

                      28. Practice affirmations

                      Repeat positive phrases that depict the life and qualities you want to attract. It may not come naturally to you, but it works.

                      29. Get up before sunrise

                      Personally witnessing the dawn brings a unique sense of awe and appreciation for life.

                      30. Be yourself

                      Nothing creates more inner discord than trying to be something other than who we really are. Authenticity breeds happiness.

                      Featured photo credit: man watching sunrise via stokpic.com

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