APRIL 11, 2017
It is an exciting thing to travel, especially overseas. Feelings of nervousness, excitement, anxiety, etc go through your mind. Sound familiar? Maybe like the feelings right before a wrestling match or tournament? As we get ready to leave and I think about the most important sacrifice i make to be able to do what I love. FAMILY.
My family has sacrificed a lot for me to be able to do what I love, to put smiles on others faces. At the same time I have sacrificed a lot of time away from them to be able to do this. Similarly, the athletes families that are experiencing this awesome opportunity, also sacrifice to help them carry out their dreams and the things they want to accomplish.
As I see the different families giving hugs as we head to the security check point, it becomes more evident the importance of the sacrifice families make. These parents have entrusted me with the lives of their children, who are traveling overseas to fulfill their wrestling goals. A huge sacrifice on their part. Wrestling, as well as any other sport, comes with huge sacrifices. Sacrifices we or our families may not understand. In the end, when it's all over, it's all we have.
I want to say thank you, first off to my family, Xiomara, Jazmin, Dijah, Malik, Omar Jr. and Oliviah for continuing to support me in what I do. It hasn't been easy but you guys have stuck this out with me for the past 14 years. I also want to thank the families of these children for trusting in me and allowing me the opportunity to share my experiences with your children. It's is a huge sacrifice on everyone's part and I am truly grateful and honored to be able to share my knowledge and passion with your children.
I will continue to blog about our experiences during this entire trip. I hope I am able to paint a clear picture through my writing so that you can also be here with us in spirit. We are currently, at JFK airport, gate 09, flying on Austria Airlines to Vienna, Austria. It has been a long time in the waiting for me to be able to head back to a camp that I started with an old friend, mentor and coach of mine. Aside from being able to expose the kids to what wrestling is like in a different part of the world, I do this for my friend and former coach. This is an extremely emotional time for me as I remember the last time we were together, it was at a debriefing after one Of our camps. I promise that I will not let you down and continue to keep the same ideas and philosophies we talked about on our previous trips together. Although your not physically with us this time, I know your watching over us. This one's for you RR.