Basketball coach continues to play despite losing his vision
Forty-seven year-old Sheldon Guy has experienced hardship throughout his life, but after the B.C. basketball coach said that he’d never be able to regain the vision he had lost, he knew there was no possibility of returning.
“Three weeks. The three-week amount of time during which my eyesight changes from what’s occurring to having no vision whatsoever,” he said.
In the fall of 2021 the man noticed a shift in his vision when driving through an underground tunnel.
“I did not see anything, no vehicles, and I couldn’t notice the tunnel’s part… My peripheral was changing and that caused me to consult my doctor and my optometrist immediately.”
Coach Guy remembers with awe the terrifying moment he was told the lesson he’d never hear the same coach.
“I got out of the room and thought, ”I must go to a place right now. A place that is private… Then I simply let go. I screamed, I shouted, I swore, and I kicked things. I was furious… It was a mess. I couldn’t know the reason for this happening to me. “
Sheldon’s girlfriend Chelsea also recollects the moment clearly.
“Up until this moment, I held in the hope that the diagnosis would be something treatable and fixable… When the doctor announced his diagnosis, it was the silence of the room. It was extremely unsettling and frightening and devastating and an overwhelming amount of emotions running through my head.”
“I did not see anything, no vehicles, I didn’t notice the tunnel’s part… the peripheral vision was changing and that made me contact my doctor, my optometrist, right away,” said Sheldon Guy and recalled the moment He learned that he would never be able to see any more.
“I fell face-first into the mattress. I’m not sure what time I was there. I’ll say about an hour and I was crying. And I continued to cry. And I remember that there was the wall that was by my bed, and I fell asleep and put my knees against the wall, and was crying. I was lying in the position of a fetal one and I thought… It was like I realized that I wasn’t going to remain in this way… in my head and my surroundings it was unimaginable to change my mind from it.”
However, the constant support and encouragement from Sheldon’s son Jaidyn as well as the girls Sheldon coaches inspired him to continue his journey.
“And I thought to myself, I’m not able to do this, I’ve got to pivot, and I’ve got to find out how to do this. That’s why I entered a reactionary state and put a new cap on.”
“He simply knew inside his heart that it was time to return. He knew the lesson was one could give to the girls. They need to be persistent, determined. Keep going. Don’t quit. Continue to push forward,” says Chelsea.
So Sheldon continued to persevere – he continues coaching players of the Langley Thunderbirds, now relying on his sense of hearing and his strong instincts of nature instead of his vision. The most important thing in his eyes is the legacy he’s left for his players to carry on – – a group of girls that he believes have become his daughters to him.
“I would like them to see me at my most vulnerable… And I want them to know that I have never given up and that I would like them to be aware of the fact that they should never abandon them or anyone else.”