Wednesday, August 13, 2008
The Olympics
I just want to make a few observations.
I have always loved the Summer Olympics.
I remember the games of Olga Korbit and Nadia and Mary Lou.
I remember the games of Bruce Jenner and Mark Spitz.

This is the first Olympics that my children have been old enough to be interested in the games, to watch and to ask questions.
It has opened up a whole new world to them.

First, we have watched all the programming extras about China, the country, it's history and its people.
We have seen some pretty interesting, OK GROSS, things they eat. It has made vegetables on her plate look pretty good now to my daughter.

She was also amazed that the athletes in China leave their parents at age 3 to begin training. It seem to bother her, she just cannot figure what Mom would let their daughter's that young leave home. We barely let her spend one night away from home and she is 7.

She has also been intrigued by all the sports that she has never even dreamed of.
Like synchronized diving.
All the cool gymnastics apparatus.
And all the different types of swimming events.
She also asked me why the boys swim suits were so small.

My son has also been captivated by the swimming and diving.
He also cheers loudly for Michael Phelps.
In every race.
Whether Phelps is swimming in the event or not.

This has opened up other conversations in our house about past Olympians.
My daughter has been reciting the facts about Wilma Rudolph. She is very impressed that as a little girl she wore a brace on her leg and went on to win Gold, Silver and Bronze medals in the Olympic Games.

I hope that she has learned that nothing in life is out of reach if you work hard.
We love watching the bios they give on the individual athletes. It seems that most all of them have had a hardship or difficulties to overcome in their lives.
We talk about how being in the Olympics is not just about winning the 3 medals.
But how important it is to just make the team and represent your country.
She asked me if she was for Russia or the USA.
I told her she could be for both.
I told her she can cheer for all the athletes.
I hope she is learning that you don't always have to choose a side, that you can be for everyone that showed up, that put it on the line, that gave it their best try.
That last place can just mean last in that event, but not last in anything else.
That the last place deserves a high five too.
I hope both of them know that in everything they do, we are cheering them on, even if they never are medal winners in the big world.
They've got the Gold in our house.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kim....we are doing the same thing at our house. The other night Emma finally told me that we needed to turn it off....she was sleepy but couldn't make herself stop watching the Olympics.

And my girls also wanted to know why the boy swimmers wear underwear!

We've gotten our maps out and pointed out all these countries.

They've discovered they never want to play volleyball, but Emma thinks gymnastics would be the greatest fun ever. And I remember feeling the same way when I was a kid.

We're loving the Olympics here too!

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