Our family is just a little bit athletic.
So when little baby Vaughn does an Olympic judicial salute after finishing his pb&j, or stands on the back of the couch in a perfect figure skating finishing pose, you can bet we’ve been watching just a little bit of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics.
I love watching the games with my kids…there are always so many lessons to learn. Incredibly inspiring stories. The Olympics is not only the sporting triumph of the nations representing…but the triumph of so many failures.
What do I mean by that?
How many thousands of wipe outs do you think it takes each snowboarder before they ever climb to the top of a mountain for their Olympic debut? How many injuries? How many downhill skiers shred themselves up tumbling head over heels hundreds of times before they ever fly down the slope at breakneck speed hoping for a medal?
Fall after fall. Bruises and broken bones, torn ligaments and fractured spines, hit after hit, failure after failure. And finally, the triumph of an Olympic chance, a shot at the Gold.
And then how many gifted, talented, world champions wipe out during the race of a lifetime at the games? Fall on the ice during the most important part of their figure skating competition? How many loose crucial milliseconds during speed skating due to an unexpected inching out or even crash epically due to another competitor?
With millions watching, they risk it all. Life and limb for a shot at being the best in the world.
I want my kids to learn that they will fail many, many times before they succeed. They will fall and falter at times privately, and at times quite publicly. They will likely stink at a sport for quite some time before they ever look like they know what they are doing and they may struggle in school for years before they ever finally learn the perfect combination of learning style, study skills and dogged determination.
So to every Olympian who has overcome, to each competitor who just kept going no matter the injury..thank you for being the lesson in perseverance that our youth so desperately need. Let’s use the lessons that the Olympics can teach our kids by instilling them the possibilities that can exist for them if they will be willing to risk failure and overcome odds.