'In My Dreams I Dance' by Anne Wafula Strike

From dancing Giraffe

'In My Dreams I Dance' by Anne Wafula Strike: a story of courage and determination

This autobiographical book tells the true and incredible story of Paralympic athlete and sporting ambassador Anne Wafula Strike, a Kenyan who was struck down by Polio as a toddler. It charts her journey, which began in a small Kenyan village, where she was persecuted for her disability, to overcoming prejudice towards disability and to finally achieving Paralympic glory as a wheelchair racer.

Written in her own words, this first person novel-like narrative gives a very personal account of Anne's experiences, from her childhood memories of being shunned by her village community and being sent away to a school far from home, to the death of her beloved mother. It explores her teenage angst in finding romance like other girls her age and her yearning for motherhood.

Throughout the book the theme of self-belief and determination is continually apparent as Anne Olympia overcomes the obstacles in her path (with her family's support), striving to achieve what others thought impossible.

Once I started reading In My Dreams I was so engrossed I literally couldn't put the book down and completed it within a few days. One of my favourite moments in the book is when Anne tells her school friend that in her dreams she does not walk with crutches or callipers, but instead 'in my dreams I dance.'

It is Anne's ambition and perseverance which enables her to succeed and her message (which she also delivers through charity work and motivational talks) is that courage and determination transcend disability. In fact, Anne challenges misconceptions towards disability, coining the more positive label: 'differently able'.

In the wake of the London 2012 Paralympics, this easy-to-read book is particularly relevant and is a must-read for not only athletes and disabled people, but groups of people and individuals from all walks of life.

Further Reading: 

For more information about Anne Wafula Strike or to purchase her book, please visit her website

To read about Anne's latest news and thoughts, visit her blog

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