May 30, 2023

Sports Help Me “Be Myself” Taylor’s Story

Young woman standing by the pool with medals around her neck.

Taylor MacKenzie sees sports activities as a wonderful equalizer: when she’s in the h2o she does not experience any different from other persons. In the pool, she states, “No person judges me or my incapacity. It truly is exactly where I feel happy and can be myself.”

Taylor, who has autism and intellectual disabilities, suggests she can verify her excellent competencies via sports—without stating a term. Her father agrees that “nobody is judging her or what she has and she is very comfortable” in the pool.

It is really been quite a journey for Taylor, who didn’t utter her to start with phrases until age 5. What impressed her to access out and connect? An exhilarating jump into the pool—and how it felt on her “tickle toes.”

These days, her pals call her “Smiler” and we can see why. Taylor is specifically delighted in the pool. But success has not been quick.

Recalls her dad, “Above the several years, this swim journey has been as traumatic and demanding as it has been thrilling and fulfilling, with a regular roller coaster of thoughts. She’s long gone from self doubt to whole perception in her have capability, which has obtained her where she is now…in and out of the water!”

At 15 yrs aged, Taylor will be a person of the youngest swimmers at the Distinctive Olympics Planet Video games in Berlin. She specializes in the freestyle and butterfly stroke—and retains receiving greater with each observe session.

Taylor says sports has taught her a ton now. “Sports taught me to discover from disappointments,” she suggests. “You is not going to generally gain or get top rated marks, but which is all right. Constantly do your greatest.”

“It won’t make any difference if I’m not ideal or profitable every time I race. I come to feel good if I have performed my best.”

Taylor MacKenzie