Sunday, August 16, 2009

Special Olympics

Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt. - Special Olympics Oath

How can that oath not empower one's spirit and inspire greatness? I first heard the oath at the first local Down Syndrome Conference we ever attended in 2008. There we learned about special needs planning, nutrition, listened to guest speakers who had Down syndrome, and the Special Olympics.

At the time, I didn't know about Eunice Kennedy Shriver (1921 - 2009), sister of former U.S. President John F. Kennedy. She was instrumental in creating an avenue of opportunities for individuals with intellectual disabilities to excel within the community through Olympic-type sports. Yet, I am one of millions of people, deeply saddened at her passing, and deeply grateful for the doors and windows she has opened so that the world may come to accept people with intellectual disabilities.

If Matthew is ever interested in joining the Special Olympics when he's older, we will support him. We will cheer for him. If he'd rather be a spectator, that's perfectly fine too. It's wonderful to have this kind of opportunity today that was non-existent 42 years ago.

Thank you for your tireless dedication, Eunice Kennedy Shriver. May you rest in peace.


3 comments:

Jack said...

Her legacy is remarkable. And for a reminder of what Special Olympics means and has meant to its participants, I invite you to check out this short video — ahamoment.com/pg/moments/view/3512 — about the aha moment of one athlete and what Special Olympics has affected her life. There are a couple of other videos related to Special Olympics on the site as well. I hope you'll give it a look when you get the chance.

All the best to you and your family — jack@ahamoment.com

AngieW said...

Beautiful.

We are fortuante that the Special Olympics 2010 USA National games will be just 30 miles from us. My Ben will be too small to participae, but we will definately go to cheer on the participants.

McTriplet Mommy said...

I used to babysit a little boy who has Down Syndrome (this "little boy" graduated from high school last year!!) and he was very involved in special olympics - his sport was bowling. And he was GOOD at it! I've always been a big fan! :)

I read your other post about "Ties that Bind" on my Google reader when you posted - but keep forgetting to get on your actual blog so I can comment! I couldn't agree more - I love my children more than anything and want nothing more than for them to be happy and healthy. And I if I could take away all of their past/present/future struggles, I would. But the people I have met along the way, the wonderful, loving families and parents and even the sweet kiddos, because of those boys - it is absolutely amazing! I have loved getting to "know" you and Matthew and see him grow and thrive! :)

Take care,
Kara