Let the GAMES Begin!!

The ’84 LA Games were one of the most memorable times in my life.  Flo-Jo & Jackie Joyner, Carl Lewis, Mary Lou, Peter Vidmar, Greg Lougains, Evelyn Ashford…I could go on and on with the names of olympians that would forever impact my life in one way or another!!  I remember being consumed by every event and every moment that summer.  Anything that had to do with the Olympics like articles about opening ceremonies,  posters of Flo-Jo with her amazing/crazy nails and jewelry were taped and stapled to my walls.   My dreams of being the gold medal gymnast like Mary Lou or an amazing sprinter like Joyner were all so real.  The neighborhood kids would re-enact the events of the day and if we were lucky enough to have a VCR, we recorded everything and re-watched it over and over again.  To make it even more exciting my grandfather would take me to McDonald’s everyday to see what I had won with their scratch off cards.  Each card had a different event name on it and after the event we would go read the board to know what medals the US won in that event.   Depending on whether it was gold, silver or bronze, you would get something for free based on the medal.  It was a highlight of my childhood and it became the fire in my gut for any and all competitive events in my life!!

With the London Olympics coming up, I am trying to figure out how to get my kids inspired by these amazing athletes that they will be seeing this summer.  As swimmers, water polo players, runners and gymnasts, my three children absorb so much of what they see around them.  Kylie tried volleyball, but after her amazing coach and wonderful neighbor took time off after having a baby, she just decided that it wasn’t for her.  She loves gymnastics and wouldn’t give up on it for anything in the world, but she knows it isn’t her event.  After her first time in the pool with a ball, she immediately knew she loved water polo and we could see it in her eyes.  In the attempt to help her become a stronger swimmer, we put all three into swimming and we realized immediately that we don’t have children, we have fish!!  It is as if they are more at home in the water than on land and as a parent, it is so fun to see them excited about something.  We are not saying that we are gold medalists by any means, but to see your child get up with a smile on their face at 6:45 am during their summer break, just to get to swim team on time gives you every reason to believe that there is a fire burning in their stomach to be better at something, to work everyday to be stronger and go longer than the day before.  I LOVE every minute and have little to no regrets about not being able to sleep in this summer at all!!

Kylie got best time yet on her 50 backstroke by more than 8 seconds, but was disqualified for something so minor…she was heartbroken, so Taylor tried to comfort and love her!!

Bring on the big blow-up screen and projector…the neighborhood is ready for Opening Ceremonies!!!  I am so excited for the games to begin!!


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