I’m happy for you, really

Yesterday I did a thing. I volunteered at the Special Olympics Minnesota 2020 Winter Games State Powerlifting Meet. This is my fourth or fifth year (I lost track) and it is a meet I will continue to volunteer for and support. The athletes who compete and the families and friends who support them are amazing – overcoming stereotypes and just working to be their best. It warms my heart every time. These are people with goals and year over year I get to see some of them achieved.

I have met so many athletes and am in awe of their strength. They face so many obstacles that I have never known and they come out smiling and wanting to to do their best. Sure, they have off days like the rest of us but they come back time and again.

This year, one athlete didn’t hit his deadlift attempts and his coach came up to the platform as we were tearing down after all official attempts had been completed and asked if we would load the bar to a weight he hit in warmups. Irregular? Sure. But to help someone end the day on a positive note was a chance I couldn’t pass up. We loaded the bar to the weight and when he hit that deadlift and I can tell you I cheered just as loudly for him as I did during the official competition, if not more because now he had a win to take home.

That is what I love to do: give you the chance to be the best you and cheer you every step of the way. I am happy for you no matter what you do. If you hit the lift, great! If you don’t hit the lift, great! Either way you tried to do the thing and that’s what I love. Really.

Why did this come up? Well, at the end of the meet I was talking with other volunteers and they said the thing they loved most about watching me on the platform spotting was that I was genuinely excited and happy for each lift. And I realized that I truly am. I am happy for you showing up and doing what you can, no matter what that is. And I will cheer as loud as need.

I’m happy for you, really.