“The world’s toughest moms, raise the world’s toughest kids. Thank you, Mom.”
This week I’ve had the opportunity to watch some of the 2014 Paralympics on television. It seems like they keep showing events at like 3:30am …. really NBCSN, really?
Nevertheless, I’m happy that I have the opportunity to watch some of the competitions.
Two weeks ago I watched a PBS documentary on the USA 2014 Paralympic Sled Hockey team and was so so so inspired. The men on this team have such positive, bright and beautiful personalities. They’ve all gone through many obstacles in their lives, but found this sport to unite together and push themselves.
I could never, and would never, compare my condition to those who are so honorably representing the USA during these Paralympic games. I can, however, tell you how inspiring these individuals are to me. Many days it’s easy to sink low into a hole of ‘why me?’, ‘I’m never going to get better’, ‘this sucks’, ‘Why can’t I just be like I used to be?’… Seeing these amazing souls who have pushed themselves, not only to get out of bed, but to perform on the world’s biggest stage, is something you can’t even describe in words.
The Hartford | Amy Purdy, U.S. 2014 Paralympic Snowboarder
“This mountain is nothing compared to the mountains I’ve faced before”
Citi | Rico Roman, U.S. 2014 Paralympic Sled Hockey
“But before begin to run, you will learn to walk… again. You’ll curse the fact that something you mastered as a one year old is now so difficult.”
These two commercials give me chills. What powerful words. Having watched both the summer and winter Olympics, while on disability, I’ve seen my fair share of inspirational athletic commercials. The commercials usually end up making me want to participate in whatever sport the olympian competes in – haha! The commercials make the olympians seem so glamourous and while they’ll focus on things they’ve given up to be there (social outings, sleeping in, maybe being home schooled, ect.) the things they’ve “given up” are usually choices the athlete has made. One fact, that sets the paralympians apart from the olympians, is that given the choice I can’t imagine they would have “given up” complete health to be there. But what they DID give up was surrendering to their diagnosis and their situation. Some of the athletes have battled their disability their entire lives, while some happened out of an unfortunate situation. Yes, they must be physically tough to be able to participate in the paraolympic games. Yes, they must have the determination and motivation to train and practice for the games. But what really stands out to me is their ability to look past what they can’t do and have the confidence, and tenacity, to show the world what they CAN do.
I’m sure they have bad days. I’m sure they have moments where they break down and wish they didn’t have to play the hand they’ve been dealt. I’m sure they’ve been frustrated at doctors, friends, family members, insurance companies, etc. But what they don’t allow is for those bad days, situations, moments, make them feel like they have a bad life. We only get one life and we must live it to the max . . . any way we know how.
P&G’s Thank You, Mom 2014 paralympic’s commercial is one of the best commercials I’ve ever seen. One of the most important tools we have in life is our support system. I can’t speak from experience, but I imagine having to watch your child overcome obstacles in life has to be one of the most difficult challenges. The parents behind these paralympians have to be just as tough, maybe even tougher, than their children.
“You believed I could accomplish anything. And now so do I. Thank You, Mom”
I completely agree with what P&G is saying here, but I’d like to amend their slogan. I believe that the world’s toughest PARENTS, raise the world’s toughest kids. My parents have instilled in me a sense of purpose, confidence and the belief to never give up. I know I wouldn’t be 1/4 of the person I am today had I not had them as my parents. I truly believe that God places people in our lives to help us through our struggles. He couldn’t have picked a more perfect pair of people for me.
So tonight I’m sending good thoughts and prayers to the 2014 paralympians and their families. Good luck on the rest of your events in Sochi!
Wishing You A Pain Free Day!