“Born in Hawaai, with die hard surfers. How can salt water not be in veins. They say home is where the heart is, and for most people it consists of four walls and a welcome mat. Me? It’s the ocean, with the warmth of the sun on my skin, from the moment I caught the first wave , I knew I wanted to be a pro-surfer, nothing really mattered. Surfing is my passion, my way of life. The stoke o get from riding a wave is pure joy, but dad always says life is an adventure. Sometimes you wipe out and end up in the impact zone” Bethany Hamilton. These are the words and thoughts of a passion-driven young surfer that came to a shattering alteration the day she became a victim of a shark attack that left her with one less relevant limb. There are three stages Bethany goes through in the movie during process of recovery which are described as: * Impact -Initial disorganization
* Recoil- Struggle to adapt
In the process of recuperation from her traumatic experience, Bethany moved from the status of being a shark attack victim to a life changing standing of being a survivor of the horrific attack. This was evidenced by her training and taking part in the National Surfing Championships where she went out and became 2nd winner of the competition. Her fellow competitor (Birchs) ,who won first place, was overcome with admiration by Bethany’s determination and stamina despite her physical hinderance that she relinquished her position and gave it to Bethany instead. Before Bethany could reach the state of mind she was in the resolution of the movie, she went through the above stated three phases of recovery. Strengthened by the love of her parents, Tom and Cheri, she refuses to give in or give up, and begins a bold return to the water. Impact Phase
According to impact stage this is where the trauma has just occurred and the victim may be numb. states that this is the part may last a few minutes and or even a few days. Feelings of shock denial and disbelief and confusion are the most common. The initial reaction of Bethany when she woke up from surgery was by slowly reaching to her left side and trying to feel for the left servered arm. As she touches the stump, an expression of shock, disbelief and a glimps of fear crosses her face. She then calls out to her mother, and the presence of her family help ease the confusion to where she was and what was happening. She portrayed reaction of denial. Denial is defined by the oxford dictionary as avoidance of disagreeable realities or threats by ignoring or refusing to recognize them; an unconscious defense mechanism that might be adapted. Ignoring a situation in order to cope is also denial. In the movie Bethany told her father that everything is going to be “ok” when she sees him crying and does not cry. When in front her family in the hospital, she made a front of emotional stability not giving in to the feelings of emotional shock that were welling inside of her. Emotional shock is a condition arising in reponse to a terrifying or traumatic event. This shock is a result of a traumatic event in which the person experiences or witnesses an event that causes the victim to experience extreme disturbing or unexpected fear The physiological symptoms, when she woke up she looked pale that may have been a result to bloodloss as the doctor had informed Bethany and her family that she had lost over 60 percent of her blood. Disturbed sleeping patterns were shown when she relived her trauma through a dream whilst she was in the hospital. She visualized the shark advancing towards her, was moving restlessly and breathing rapidly in her disturbed sleep. An observing bystander, would note that she was paralyzed by fear through her anguished moaning and crying in her sleep from the verocious shark. Kotzier and Erbs (2008) states that...
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