Thursday, September 4, 2008

Jen will carry the flag and Jessie will wear pink shues

Long day.
Practiced on the game court again. I blew out my shoes. My lateral motion sometimes splits the bottom of my shoes- and, well, my left shoe split open this morning at practice.
We can super glue it, but I would rather play in a different pair of shoes.
Tom is going to bring a pair of shoes with him to China and I'll get them from him at Opening Ceremonies.
Get this, the shoes I am going to wear are my favorite goalball shoes, but neither my coach nor my Mom like them. Reason? They are pink.
When I say pink, I mean iridescent pink.
Can't say that I'm big on pink shoes either, but these particular shoes breathe great, allow me to feel the lines on the court with my feet and allow for great lateral motion.

Women's and Men's goalball had a joint team meeting tonight to nominate our USA flag barer for opening ceremonies. I was asked to speak on behalf of Women's Goalball and I nominated Jen Armbruster.
Steve from the men's team nominated Jen as well.
We went into a room with 16 other team representatives and each person nominated an athlete from their specific sport to carry the flag during opening ceremonies.
There were amazing compelling stories shared about all of the athletes nominated. I spoke about Jen's athletic career- she is ranked #1 goalball player in the world and this is her fifth Paralympic games. She lost her sight and has dedicated her life to building a larger community of blind athletes by establishing over ten sports education camps throughout the United States. At least 16 of the 24 visually impaired athletes at these games were either mentored by or attended one of Jen's sports camps. Currently Jen works at the Lakeshore Foundation with vets with disabilities. The motto she has when working with newly disabled vets is, "If I can do it, you can do it." She works with vets with all types of disabilities, but has a special place in her heart for vets who have lost their vision .
Steve spoke about coming up as a sports camp kid having Jen as a role model.
In the end, Jen won the nomination. So Goalball and blind athletes will be well represented in the opening ceremonies.
The nomination process is something I have never experienced before- we had to keep voting until all of the candidates were eliminated- and there were some incredibly compelling stories.
I think my experience doing public speaking helped me present a much stronger case on Jen's behalf.
Hats off to Jen and to all of the incredible athletes nominated to carry the flag.
Can't pull up my blog on my laptop. Hope you can read this...

1 comment:

mike said...

Some Olympic athletes share your fashion sense : Very Pink Shoes