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To meet an Olympian!

To be Emily’s mom means many different things.

One thing that seams more obvious as the years go by is that Emily opens doors. I don’t mean physical doors but rather opportunities.

On June 25th, Emily and I were invited to attend a gala/fundraiser for Special Olympics. We were invited by one of our main sponsor for Emily’s baseball team.

We were hoping for an opportunity to chat with some members of the government about our baseball program so we went in, Emily introduced herself, we took pictures and had an awesome meal.

The keynote speaker for the evening was Jon Montgomery.

Olympic champion (Whistler game) and host of the Amazing race Canada.

He describes himself on twitter (@jonmonty) as:

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During his address, Emily appeared to be mesmerized. She truly listened to him and at the end he said he was collecting fingerprints on his gold Olympic medal so if anyone wanted to touch it that we could go see him.

I figured that was probably going to be our best opportunity to get to touch a gold Olympic medal so we stood in line.

Emily was nervous even though she was obviously a “fan” following his speech. She didn’t want to go see him but wanted to go see him… I distracted her while we waited in line and suddenly it was our turn.

Here’s how it went.

Jon tried to put the medal around her neck so Emily stepped back saying “no, it’s okay” while reaching to just touch the medal and keeping a safe distance from the guy.

Obviously not the typical reaction he gets but he went with it and we took this lovely picture.

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I liked Jon Montgomery, he won a gold medal for Canada and drank beer straight from the pitcher while walking in Whistler. What’s not to love. I became a fan of Jon Montgomery seconds after we took that picture.

Right after we were done and should have been moved along Emily said: “Mom, tell him my story”.

I said: “Which one Emily, you have so many”

Emily: “You know, about my syndrome and the doctors said I can’t walk and I can’t talk…”

That’s precisely the moment where it happened.

Jon Montgomery looked at Emily and said : “but you walked here to meet me and you are telling me the story!”

Emily looked at him and said “I know!!!” With the facial expression and hand gesture to add to the words.

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The hug after that was automatic.

What Jon did that evening costed him nothing and might have added a couple of minutes of wait time for the people in line behind us. He paid attention to Emily and saw that she wanted him to know something about her. He listened to her and for that I will always be grateful.

When we got home, I found him on twitter and twitted the picture of them, thanking him for his time.

He retwitted my post and added this!

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How do you think that made my girl feel? Jon Montgomery told over 10,000 of his followers that Emily is amazing.

Jon, represents the best of the best. An Olympian and a truly remarkable human being. I am so happy we had a chance to meet him and grateful for the opportunity he gave Emily to share her story.

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4 thoughts on “To meet an Olympian!

  1. Absolutely wonderful. Too many times we get the impression that the “winners” are all ego maniacs. Thanks for proving that idea as wrong as the idea that our special kids will never walk or talk.

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