The spirit of the Olympics

I love the Olympics. I love the stories. I love witnessing the spirit of the Games. There’s sportsmanship that you don’t see with a lot of today’s pro athletes. I cry tears of happiness when things go right and I cry tears of sadness when disappoint reigns (I’m pregnant and hormonal – that’s my excuse!). Today, while watching last night’s prime time broadcast on DVR (it doesn’t end until midnight!) I cried with pride in humanity. Most people are aware of South African runner, Oscar Pistorius, born without tibulas in his legs. His legs were amputated at the knees at 11 months old. His parents insisted on treating him just like his older brother. If his brother climbed a tree, he was expected to learn how to climb that tree. He never felt different. He has been quoted as saying, “Being disabled doesn’t have to be a disadvantage”. He learned to walk and run using prosthetics. He learned to run so well that he qualified for the Olympics. Yes, a man with amputated legs ran in the Olympics. He took second in the preliminaries and then took last in the semifinals. His goal was to make it to the semifinals. He accomplished his goal. What happened after his race brought tears to my eyes. The winner of that semifinal heat, Kirani James of Grenada (the favorite to win the whole thing), went over to Pistorius and gestured that he wanted to exchange name bibs. He was so inspired by Pistorius that he wanted a token of the man who’s nickname is ‘Blade Runner’. It was such a wonderful show of sportsmanship. It truly is what the Olympic games are all about.

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IMAGE COURTESY OF BUSINESS INSIDER, Sports page

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