The Olympics are here! The Olympics are here!
What is it about the Olympics that draw us in so completely? Is it the world-wide competition? The (mostly) amateur-status thing? The pageantry? The personal stories of overcoming? Whatever it is–or the combination of them all–the Olympics seem to give us a shared experience in a way few other things do. I have great childhood memories of watching the Olympics with my family, even being allowed to eat on TV trays so we didn’t miss an event! We continued those traditions with our children, making the Olympics a special time to bond, to talk, to celebrate or cry together over our favorites.
Maybe part of it was more personal for my family, knowing that my parents’ good friend won a gold medal in freestyle wrestling in Rome back in 1960. Long before we were born, of course, but we heard the story, saw the medal. With the games only happening every four years, the spotlight is swift and ever-changing (except for the professionals that now compete.) So maybe that connection brought home the fact that most of these competitors are real people, many of whom will go on to lead normal lives, even if they medal in their sport. Or maybe we have the same fascination with the Olympics as everyone else.
All I know is we are excited at our house. I hope you will join in some of the fun, too!
Do the Olympics figure into your family traditions? What events are you most looking forward to watching?