Climbing on the Top of Your Dreams - The UOS Times
The UOS Times
OpinionPeople
Climbing on the Top of Your Dreams
Hwang Yoon-jeong Reporter Yang Chan-sik Junior Rep  |  mimitoto99@uos.ac.kr cs1yang@uos.ac.kr
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[0호] 승인 2010.10.05  
트위터 페이스북 네이버 구글
“Do you have a dream that you sincerely hope to achieve?” How many people can confidently answer this question? Most people just follow what others do. They kill time doing nothing without any specific plans for the future. When they are faced with a difficult situation, they can get frustrated and give up instead of striving to improve the situation. So...What about you? Are you full of dissatisfaction about yourself and your life? We are about to introduce a librarian to you. We want you to get courage to start new challenges in your life through his story.

Have you ever seen the one-armed librarian in the Main Library? He is the man we want to introduce, Shin Myeong -jin. He lost both his legs and his right arm in an accident when he was a child. He has artificial legs! Imagine what it would be like if you didn’t have an arm and two legs, how would you feel? If I was in that situation, I would be very sad and depressed.

However, he is different, everyday is continuously happy for him. A long time ago, he believed his arm would grow someday, but his grandmother told him that his arm would not grow. Then, he felt depressed. “I envied Piccolo, who is a green alien in Dragon Ball-which is the name of a comic book- because he can reproduce his arm again.” Whenever he was in hard times, his family was supportive and gave him a reason to exist. Now, he thinks disabilities are also blessing. I asked him how he overcame his disabilities. He said, “The word ‘overcome’ is superfluous to a man who considers that disorders are no longer disorders. Ways of doing things are just different for me from others. The word ‘overcome’ is humiliating for me.” What a modest person he is! He does many things that everyone else does only with his left hand, driving a car.

Needless to say, standing for a long time is impracticable for him. However, to our surprise, he climbed Mt. Tsetsee Gun, which is one of the highest mountains among the four sacred mountains in Ulaanbaatar in Mongolia, with members of the Korea Amputee Association (KAA), and some Mongolians this summer. He climbed the mountain for nine hours, even climbing much faster than other people had expected. He only has one knee joint, so he has a greater risk of falling down with artificial limbs. In addition, there can be severe discomfort where the artificial legs are attached to his skin, especially in summer.

He stated, “Actually, I don’t like climbing mountains that much. But I enjoyed all the moments even though it was hard. Only the person who had climbed the mountain could know the feeling of joy and gladness at the top. When I looked upward at the mountain while I was standing on the ground, I wondered how I could climb such a high mountain. However, after walking with patience and looking at your feet, you will reach on top before you know it. Climbing mountains has taught me that if the top of the mountain is a dream that I want to achieve, focusing on this moment will lead you to your dream.”

Mr. Shin did volunteer work in Mongolia after climbing Mt. Tsetsee Gun. Also, he visited Mt. Baekdu as a member of The Hope Expedition(희망원정대) of KAA last year. He said, “What I did was possible because we all did it together. I hope that other people create desire and challenges for themselves by hearing my story. There was a person whom I met at a KAA meeting. He became injured through an accident, so he was very depressed and deeply frustrated. Later, he told me that he considered his handicap was nothing when he saw me, and he took the situation and created more courage for himself after meeting me!!”

He further challenges himself through several sports such as rafting, shooting, scuba diving, table tennis, bowling, badminton, and so on. One of his greatest achievements was that he was a gold medalist swimmer in the 29th National Para Games. At first, he was persuaded by a senior worker to start swimming. Now, swimming represents much more importance in his life because it changed his life completely.

Before he started swimming, he only watched sports games. Due to the fact that he participates in swimming, he has become more open-minded and his character has also changed to be more positive and enthusiastic. More importantly, he challenges all things with the thought of ‘I’ll try it,’ instead of hesitating. Through this way of thinking, his life has become more pleasant and meaningful.

n order to attend the 30th National Para Games, which was held on September 6 to 10th, he trained for two months very hard after work. As a result, he won two silver medals in the 50-meter and 100-meter freestyle. And now, he has a new big dream, “I want to participate in the 2012 London Paralympics as a member of the national swimming team. Actually, the training situation was not good because the swimming coach wasn’t selected until just two months before the competition. I tried to find a personal fitness advisor, but whenever I called swimming coaches, they refused my offer without seeing me.

Still, I will find a personal fitness advisor to help me realize my goal to go to London. Nowadays, there are many people who have no dreams. Dreams give us the direction of where we want to go, like a compass. If you think it is vague, just dream a very small thing, and when you accomplish that goal then make your dreams even bigger. A quote from the book called, states, ‘An immovable passion is nothing more than a mass of flames.’ And, if you have a dream, it is important to carry out a plan. So I make dream-notes. I write down what I want to achieve, and if it is achieved I write down ‘REALIZED!!’ Likewise, if you cultivate the habit of achieving your small goals, you will recognize the bigger ones.”

Mr. Shin days wakes up at 5:30 am because he commutes from Incheon to the University of Seoul (UOS) and it takes about 4 hours each day. But he does not mind the time and the tiredness. He wants to keep in touch with his old friends and he loves to meet people and work together. His activities include choir practice, swimming and various meetings. During the interview, we could feel his happiness and joyful when he talked about his activities and challenging energy for life.

We are usually more eager to be distinguished for a talent which we do not possess, than to be praised for which we do possess. However, through this interview, I realized that, ‘if I am not in a good situation, it can be changed in my mind!’ And, I am assured that if I keep on trying to achieve small goals, it will bring me much closer to the day when I realize my overall dream. If you are thankful for your life and try to achieve your goals, you will also be much closer to achieving your dreams.
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