A Mind of Her Own (Synopsis)Video available here: http://one.revver.com/watch/95653/flv/affiliate/28779
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At the age of ten, Sophie is already a talented young gymnast. When Sophie's father, Richard, undergoes emergency heart surgery, Sophie is very distressed and determines to become a doctor. However, Sophie is not doing very well at school and her mother notices that she uses every trick in the book to avoid going to school. Even when she is at school, Sophie avoids the periodic reading tests like the plague using inventive excuses to avoid doing them but one day she does have a reading test and it is apparent that her reading ability is far behind the rest of the class. The teacher tells her she must try harder if she really wants to be a doctor.
Some years later, Sophie is at secondary school. She has learned to deal with her academic failure and has reinvented herself as a very well turned out young woman. She is still struggling at school but remains determined to realise her ambition of becoming a doctor. Her schoolmates continue to tease her, now saying that she is trying so hard to get a boy friend but doesn't realise they want a girl with a brain, not a bimbo.
For a few weeks, Sophie has a supply teacher, Peter, who suggests she is tested to see why she has so much trouble reading and it is discovered that she is severely dyslexic and, to help her read better, she is prescribed glasses with red lenses. Her classmates mock her and tease her even more now but one of them, Becky, does not and they become good friends.
Sophie's continuing success at gymnastics leads her to be entered for the national championships but this is overshadowed by the collapse of her father¹s business after which the family have to leave their big house and move to rented accommodation. Sophie has to start having free school meals and the ridicule of her class mates continues with renewed enthusiasm.
To make things even worse, Sophie is told she has to give up gymnastics because her back can¹t take any more. It is the one thing she is good at and she is very distressed but she renews her determination to become a doctor and starts to study hard.
After receiving poor GCSE results and delivering a poor performance at the end of her first year at A level, Sophie¹s head of year suggests she should consider following a less academic course. She decides to leave and joins best friend Becky who is studying part time at a sixth form college to achieve her ambition of becoming a physiotherapist.
Whilst at college, Sophie becomes reacquainted with Peter who teaches there. He is very supportive of Sophie¹s ambition to become a doctor and encourages her in her dream.
Whilst studying for her A levels, Sophie works in the A&E department of the local hospital where, one day, a drug addict patient removes the drip needle from her arm and sticks it into Sophie. Sophie is rushed to the hospital pharmacy and prescribed a combination of very strong anti-viral drugs. These make her very ill and she is off work and college for some time. During this period Peter visits her and tutors her so that she does not fall behind with her studies and a platonic relationship develops between them.
Eventually, Sophie gets an interview at a medical school but they refuse her saying she should take a related degree course first and then maybe she will be able to transfer to medicine. Sophie is disappointed but continues to work hard and her A level results are good enough to get her onto the Biomedical Science course.
Peter's ongoing support encouragement eventually leads to him and Sophie falling in love and after a year on her course in Edinburgh she transfers to Leeds and they get married.
Sophie is spotted by Harry, one of her professors, as being particularly bright and dedicated and he offers her work in the summer helping with his research into post trauma regeneration of the spinal cord. She proves to be very good at this and the results of her work are presented at an international conference on the subject.
Despite being expected to get a first class degree and her good research work and her hospital experience, as she nears the end of her course and applies to medical schools, Sophie is again turned down by them all. Her dream has finally come to an end. She will never be a doctor.
Throughout all this Sophie has maintained regular contact with her friend, Becky, who is now a qualified physiotherapist working with paralysed people.
At her graduation, her professor comes up to her and tells her that he would like her to come and work with him and do a PhD. She is delighted and accepts.
Some time later, Sophie, as part of her research is conducting clinical trials of a new treatment for damage to the spinal cord. The treatment has resulted from a discovery made by her and developed by the research team of which she is part.
At an international conference, Sophie is at the podium presenting the results of her clinical trials which have proved very successful. Her work and that of the team have resulted in a number of paraplegics being given treatment that has enabled them to walk again.
Sophie's husband, Peter, is in the front row of the audience and as she sits down after her presentation, he stands and applauds loudly. The rest of the people in the conference also stand and applaud. Sophie is astounded by the response but when Becky comes walking down the aisle with her patient, the one who participated in the trials, the tears start to flow. The man climbs the steps onto the platform and kisses her and thanks her. At last Sophie is vindicated - she may not have her ambition to become a doctor but she has helped to heal people with terrible injuries and in the process has healed herself.
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