Oceans 7 - A Brief Introduction
"I felt that my body had completely failed me and I might as well be dead.”
Oceans 7 has all the elements of a classic hero story. It's a film about the importance of believing in yourself and in your dreams, of questioning established truths and finding the courage to fight against the odds. It's inspiring and exciting; it involves adventure, life threatening dangers and super-human feats.
Beth's drive to conquer Oceans Seven in one year has its roots in an illness that has shaped her life ever since she was a teenager: ME (Myalgic Encephalopathy) also known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). It's a little understood disease and, because there is no obvious physiological or neurological disorder, diagnosis is notoriously difficult. Symptoms vary greatly from patient to patient: they can be mild (feelings of lethargy and exhaustion) to a complete physical breakdown, as was the case with Beth.
For long periods of her youth she was wheelchair bound, helpless and dependent on others: "It was as if my legs had gone from underneath me. I couldn't feel them. I couldn't brush my hair because the pain of lifting my arm left me weeping with tears. I withdrew from the world to such a degree that for about 22 hours a day I was semi-conscious. I felt that my body had completely failed me and I might as well be dead.”
Although she has recovered, the curse of ME has completely altered Beth's life. It’s “in her blood" and she is aware that you never really get over it.
Her life-long love of water has been critical in her recovery, in particular long-distance swimming where her body "came back” to her. Oceans Seven will be the ultimate proof for Beth that she has truly triumphed over her illness.