By Rama Gaind
PS News Books
The Only Lesson
By Bill McKenna (Balboa Press, $11.95, softcover, 123 pages)
Truth is stranger than fiction is one saying that aptly describes the life of pilot and adventurer Bill McKenna.
He is a testament to the motivational saying that “in order to succeed, you must first be willing to fail”.
McKenna says that failure is not just good, it’s an essential tool needed for the road to overall mental and physical health and happiness.
“I haven’t had an easy life, but everything happens for a reason.” His life has taken him through despair, domestic abuse, shipwrecks and even a disfiguring skydiving accident.
“But no matter what’s happened, I’ve just kept going and learning from past mistakes, things I wouldn’t have learned any other way—and I couldn’t be happier.”
In his memoir, the adventurer and near-death survivor tells of his successes and struggles to find happiness.
The Only Lesson encompasses everything from his strict Irish-Catholic upbringing, running marathons, learning to fly planes and helicopters and earning his black belt to surviving a freefall in a skydiving mishap and seeing his life’s dream shipwrecked by an unseen island.
He reminisces that “My book started as a literal and figurative accident when I wrecked my yacht in Mexico … that set in motion a series of events that charted me in a direction I had no intention of going”.
His journey through life brought financial success and catastrophe, a constant struggle with crash-and-burn relationships and a battle with depression.
“Unless you’re willing to have a go, fail miserably, and have another go, success won’t happen.”
No one said that life’s journey to understanding was easy, but accidents appear to be life’s best teachers.
Through this true story and journey of discovery, Bill McKenna shares a life of intense experiences, seamlessly woven with lessons often obvious such as the value of intuition and the importance of forgiveness.
Edition 400, 11 March 2014
To find out more about Rama Gaind click here.