I’ve had a few people not openly deride the fact that I was on a reality television show but come close. In truth I get it. There has not been another show of this genre that has captured my attention anything like The Amazing Race Canada. I think the problem is that most believe that the ‘reality’ isn’t really reality at all but is indeed faked.
This is what makes The Amazing Race Canada such an incredible show. Aside from some ‘editing license’ the viewer gets an honest portrayal of what we the racers have experienced. There is no stopping to reshoot or to add a little more drama. The viewer is given a near perfect representation of the facts as they unfold during the race.
Along with superb storytelling the show shares the majestic beauty of Canada in such a way that I cannot help but come away feeling completely proud to have been a part of season one. And then there was the winning!
I share this background with you because I feel it’s important to understand when we look at the perseverance that it took to hang in and ultimately win. The struggles that Tim Jr. and I were represented as having were real. We weren’t faking it for the cameras. Thus there is a powerful analogy to be drawn for those of us who have Parkinson’s and for those who assist us along the way.
As I travel the country telling my story of Parkinson’s and The Amazing Race Canada I like to remind my audiences of how the Tim’s fared throughout the raced. That is,
‘We were the dark horses, the come from behind, Cinderella story that no one expected to happen. We were error prone and chronically behind. We had multiple opportunities to roll over and die knowing full well that no one would have been surprised and few would have mourned our passing.’ Our ultimate success relied heavily on our willingness to persevere when all seemed lost.
I draw on this reminder frequently; that it’s not about winning all the time or every step of the way. Our journeys are often fraught with disappointment and failure. Having watched the show you would have seen that The Tim’s did not win a single leg of the race until the final leg. Life and Parkinson’s is much like the race; it’s about having the ability to get up each new day and having the Strength to do our best, the Courage to be content with what our best produces and Persevere.
If you Google the word perseverance you will find this definition; ‘to carry on in a course of action, even in the face of difficulty, with little or no evidence of success.’ I like to joke that right alongside the definition is a picture of the Tim’s because never did we ever give you any evidence that we would be successful. Despite our ineptitude in reading a map, despite the fatigue and tremor of Parkinson’s we chose to simply do our best. Each day we made a decision to be content with what our best produced and we chose to continue, to persevere, regardless.
There were many opportunities for us to simply give up to simply give in to those voices that said you’re never going to make it, you’re never going to over come this, you’ve lost too much ground. In reality these statements simply were not true. We indeed did make it, we did over come, and we had not lost too much ground. Had we listened to the fears, given in to the fatigue or simply not been willing to put in the hard work we would have sacrificed a championship!
If there was anything truly unreal about this reality TV show it was who the final three teams were: a Canadian war vet with no legs and his brother; two petite little women from Ontario, and a guy with Parkinson’s and his son. I think I can say with a fair degree of confidence that no one expected these three teams to comprise the top three finalists.
All three teams possessed the same burning determination to ‘Live Your Best’. We were not going to settle for less than our best, we would accept what our best produced and persevere.
Strength & Courage
Tim Hague Sr. is an author, internationally sought after professional speaker and Winner of The Amazing Race Canada season #1. Tim was diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease at the age of 46. He hails from Winnipeg Canada where he resides with his wife and children. For event bookings or to learn more about Tim go to www.TimSr.ca.