Know, connect, dream
Guess what day it is! I’ll give you a hint. You may hear me humming, “Bum, bum, ba-bum, bum, bum, bum. Bum, bum, ba-bum, bum, bum, bum, ba-ba-bum, bum, bum.” (Cymbal crash!)
In case you didn’t guess from that stirring rendition of “Bugler’s Dream,” it’s the first official day of the 2014 Winter Olympics. I’m excited! I bet you can you tell by my written transcription of one of the most popular tunes used in television broadcasts of the Olympics.
My husband is excited, too. He even took vacation from work, part of this week and all of next week.
In preparation for the Olympics, NBC has aired specials the past two nights. Tuesday evening’s feature, “Winter Gold,” treated viewers to a behind-the-scenes look at Olympics coverage. Hosted by eight-time Olympic medalist Apolo Ohno, the special focused on how NBC has prepared for Sochi, beginning immediately after the London Olympics ended. The segments included details about NBC Olympics’ research and production teams, the crews’ travels and the technology used to broadcast the speed, sounds and visuals of the Olympics.
Then last night, NBC broadcast “Raising an Olympian,” in partnership with Procter and Gamble. P&G’s brilliant advertising is known for bringing tears to moms’ eyes, and last night’s special was no exception. It featured some of the best American athletes and their moms (and some dads, too) as they discussed the hard work and sacrifices involved on the journey to the Olympics.
One of the featured athletes was freestyle skier Nick Goepper, an Indiana native who moved to Oregon to pursue his dream when he was 15. Here is what his mom Linda had to say about that: “People always ask me, ‘How in the world could you let your son go?’ How could I not let him go? I mean, it wasn’t about me. It was about him. It was harder having him here, not being able to pursue what he wanted to, than letting him go. He wants to go to those mountains. It’s just who he is.”
As a mom to a 6-year-old hockey player who just learned to ski, I thought about those statements. She recognized who her son was and let him do what he loved. She said yes to his dreams, even though she wasn’t sure they were realistic.
When I wrote a blog about the 2012 Summer Olympics, I tried to comprehend how proud Olympians’ parents must be – no matter what place their children finish or whether they earn a medal. Gauging how my heart feels like it’s going to burst every time Elliot sloppily slaps the puck into the goal, I cannot imagine what Olympians’ parents feel.
Because I have this affinity for the Olympics, sometimes I daydream about what it would be like to be an Olympian’s mom. I have to admit – it sounds pretty cool.
Then I think about how much I hate that huge bag of hockey equipment and how stinky those pads get, and I remember that the glamour of the Olympics is just a tiny slice of glory that follows years of seemingly mundane, monotonous hard work.
And then I go back to what Linda Goepper said. Really, I just want to know my children – to really know them and connect with them, to dream with them, to say yes more to them.
Originally published on ovparent.com.