Saturday, August 23, 2008

Olympic Champions

We have been glued to the Olympics the last 2 weeks, and how could you not with all the amazing athletes.  We watched, we learned, we fell in love with them, Nastia, Shawn, the great Mr. Phelps, and Kerri and Misty, to name a few. Watching the Bolt break wold records. Nothing is like the Olympics.  It's so great and so full of hope, courage, hard work, dedication and all those characteristics we are always in awe of.

And I got to thinking about how Adoption is like an Olympic event.  And not just because it only happens once every 4 years  (ha ha that's a joke.) I mean, hello, emotionally aren't you just all over the place, the highest highs and the deepest lows.  

First of all, I have to say that as I watched these athlete's, I say to my self how do they have the confidence to stand in the spotlight in front of millions of people and say judge me.  Then no matter the outcome they put on their smile and wave to the crowd and the tears come, either from complete joy or deep despair at a lost chance.  It doesn't matter if they think they are the best or if on paper they are the best, when the whistle blows and the clock starts that is when they find out who the winner is.  And they could have done everything perfect, gone above and beyond, but one small mistake like a step on a line and they are disqualified, it is done.  A lost chance.

Then there are those who support them in their journey, the sacrifice of their families and friends who share in the winnings and the losing whose emotions are tied to the athlete. They want them to have the best, to be the best, but they can only sit and watch and hope that when the time is right everything is there, and the competitor has done their best and it is enough to count.

What about their amazing coaching staff, who knows what they need to do, they stop and tell the athlete what they don't want to hear in order to make them better, to increase there chances of success by helping them achieve their dream. If the athletes listen and do what they are told, they are better for it. Some stick with the same coach, some have to change, and it's okay because there is that one goal that one desire to get the GOLD, and the coaches understand that.

I am amazed at the time and sacrifice that they have put into this.  I am sure there are parties they miss, times to be with friends or family.  When they just want to sleep in and hide under the covers, but they don't wait for it to get better they put on the running shoes and make it better.  They take care of themselves physically so when the challenge is there, they are ready.  They are prepared emotionally to watch the competitions steal the show away, maybe even what they wanted and go out there and do their best.  They have prepared themselves not to be shaken by the competition, they have great focus.  When you watch them and something goes wrong, they slip or lose their balance, they don't stop.  They keep going, not because they want to win, but because they want to finish what they started, to know for themselves they did the best they could.

Then you ask why?  Why make the sacrifice?  Why put the time and money into it?  Nothing is guaranteed, there can always be someone better around the corner and you won't get the win.  Why take the chance? Why set your self up for a potential loss?  Why bring on the heartache? Why go after the gold?  I think they look at those around them who have accomplished what they want, they see it is possible and they see the joy and peace others have.  And they want a piece of it, they want to feel it for themselves, not to hear about it or watch it, but to be a part of it.  They want to have it to share to help others, to represent their country with pride.

People ask them stupid questions, bring mean things up to see their reaction, invade their privacy, tell them what to do and how to do it.  And they listen and answer with grace even though they probably just want to roll their eyes and walk away.

It started with a dream, a deep desire that no one could talk you out of, that not everyone understood, it doesn't matter because it is your dream and you are the one who knows it can be done and you can make it happen.  Its an experience that is your own, others will share with you and be there with you, but it is still you who has done and accomplished this, you who did the work.

And then I see her, 
I see that birth mother 
who is doing a headstand
 on the top of the platform
 in front of 91,000 people
 and a few judges.
Ready to take the 
jump of her life.

  I see her parents, friends, coaches 
looking on with anticipation, 
fear, hope, amazement love,
 and a deep desire for 
her success
and they have to sit back and watch.  

I see her eyes focused on the goal, 
not blinking
 not caring who is around her
 or what they have or haven't done, 
she is focused on what she has to do.  
She has prepared in every way possible, 
she has accomplished
 and overcame more
 than anyone will know 
to make this happen.

 She searches out and finds the family
 who will be what her baby needs. 
 She works and prepares her self physically 
for the task at hand. 
She tries to prepare emotionally.
She does it out of unselfish 
It isn't easy
It isn't fun
It isn't what she ever thought 
she could ever do.

But when the time is right 
she places her baby
into their hands,
not knowing for awhile
what the outcome will be.
But knowing in her heart she did the 
very best she could.

When she stands on that platform
and thinks about the journey
that got her there.
I hope she finds the peace
and comfort and joy in knowing.
She did what no one 
else at that time could do.


Mackey Family said...

I loved this post. It brought tears to my eyes. Thanks for putting it so well!!

Kamie said...

I totally loved this post. So much to think about.

Naomi said...

you are so incredible!! I wish I could write as well as you. You guy are truely going to make a wonderful birth mom so happy someday. I love you Hang in there.