Player's Own Voice podcast: Cindy Ouellet sets the standard
Captain of the women's wheelchair basketball team leads by example
The first reaction from every newcomer to the Paralympics is always the same: "Those people are amazing!"
The more they watch, the deeper the appreciation.
"Did you see how fast that guy swam the 100 free, and he only has one leg! ... How did that completely blind woman log such a blazing triathlon?"
It never fails. If we like the Olympics for the athletes' stories, we love the Paralympics for the same reason.
Which brings us to Cindy Ouellet.
Prepare to feel like a slacker: Ouellet is dominant in two para sports (winter and summer), she's finishing a PhD in biomedical engineering, she's a bilingual advocate for people with disabilities, LGBTQ2 people, mental health and anti- bullying causes.
She's also developing a university course and, to top it all off, she's like Mike Holmes with the power tools. Build it, fix it — no problem for Cindy.
That's not to say it's all smooth sailing for the captain of Canada's wheelchair basketball team.
Cindy has suffered mental and physical setbacks that would knock anyone off their game. But we can safely add 'determined' to Cindy's laundry list of admirable attributes. Just what the team needs entering Tokyo.
A little while before the Paralympics began, Player's Own Voice podcast caught up with Cindy at her home in Quebec City.
Like the CBC Sports' Player's Own Voice essay series the podcast allows athletes speak to Canadians about issues from a personal perspective.
To listen to the entire fourth season of POV podcast, subscribe for free on Spotify, iTunes, Google Podcasts, Stitcher, Tune In or wherever you do your other podcast listening.