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My family lives for the Olympics. I never think we do, I think we just enjoy them, until the year comes around and we get a little quieter and get in our zones around the TV. We’re competitors and beyond so the Olympics make perfect sense to us.

I forget some people don’t like the Olympics. I forget some people just don’t care. At the laundromat in 2008 a woman was complaining there was nothing on, just those stupid Olympics. Someone corrected her. What had been on were the Trials. The Olympics hadn’t even started yet. She moaned like she had just found out what she had gotten herself into.

The Olympics only happen every four years, it’s not like this happens every single day. If you don’t like sports or athletics either don’t watch or just enjoy the hot guys and amazing women. You think I’m watching swimming because I like water? No.

The Olympics are when miracles happen. Underdogs get recognized and rewarded. Countries that have never received a medal get a medal. Countries and cultures that do not allow women out in public without male supervision have sent athletes. The impossible becomes possible. The impossible is accomplished. People leave everything they have in their body, heart and soul on the floor, field, water, apparatus, or whatever their thing is this is their moment. This is the moment they’ve been training for. It is all or nothing in so many ways.

Some people don’t even know they are on which blows my mind. What rock are you under? I don’t know if some of the local newscasters are trying to sound cool, like they’re so busy being average Joe, “Apparently there are Olympics on… I don’t know what sports are going on now.” You also don’t know the weather or do a good job of local coverage. You could make locals look a little more strange if you tried but you’re kind of owning that category and like your secure position. I digress…

I’ve wanted to go to the Olympics ever since I saw Keri Struggs vault in Atlanta. I remember sitting on the living room floor up in Door County, Wisconsin, just mesmerized by what I was seeing. She did her first vault. It was alright. Not amazing or what she needed. She didn’t look 100% as she walked back to the start, even as a little girl I knew that. Then she charged for her second vault, launched, and stuck it. Then she hop, hop, hopped and apologetically got to her knees. She had injured herself beyond repair.

I wanted to do that. Break my foot in front of millions, sacrifice myself for the sake of my team, my sport, and my dream. That was also the first Olympics I saw dressage on TV and found out dressage was an Olympic sport. Well I had my life planned out. Then life happened (and not in a bad way).

My goal for this Olympics was to be happy for the Olympians, not jealous or spiteful. So far, mission accomplished. I have cried many a time overjoyed or moved by someone’s story. I’m also cheating and haven’t sought out dressage, but so far so good.

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