Tomorrow morning the Games of the 31st Olympiad will officially open and I can look forward to 2 weeks of watching some of our greatest athletes strive to reach their ultimate dream, an Olympic medal. I love watching the emotion of competition and feeling some of that emotion myself, half a world away in my little lounge room.
Growing up in a family of four sporty girls, there was no shortage of competition between us. Family game night didn't always end happily! But my best memories are from the times I have been able to compete with my sisters. There is nothing like winning with the people that mean the most in your life. Our family photo albums are littered with sports related images and the best thing about looking back on them, is checking out all the outdated hairstyles and uniforms. Those photos also remind me just how much being involved in sports has enriched my life and contributed to who I am today.
Sport has played such a major roll in my upbringing. It's taught me how to deal with pressure and expectations, how to deal with winning and losing, and how to be disciplined and determined. I couldn't have learnt any of these lessons without the positive support from my parents. Yes they got upset at bad referring or poor opposition behaviour but they always remembered that they were my role model in dealing with these occurrences. I wish all sporting parents remembered this, for in the long run poor behaviour on a side line only ends up effecting their own child.
It's great that during the Olympic coverage you get the chance to see the parents behind the competitors. Reaching your potential must be so much easier with the love, support and encouragement of your family. Being a parent myself now I can understand the pride that I see on each of those parents faces. I thinks its the same pride you feel for all of your childs achievements, whether it be walking for the first time, riding without training wheels, writing their name, learning to swim or maybe winning an Olympic medal. Not every child can grow up to be an Olympian but you can help them to grow up having the confidence to think like one, and then stand back and see what they can achieve.
So over the next two weeks I hope you all get the opportunity to watch some of the events and if you have just a few minutes spare maybe send a few words of support to our Olympians as they challenge themselves against the rest of the world. You can also follow the Official Facebook page of the Australian Team so you can really get to know those that are representing us.