I grew up skiing. Skiing almost every single day. During the winter, two days a week, the school bus didn't take us home. It took us to Bousquet, because weekends weren't long enough for the kind of skiing we wanted to do.
When I was five years old, I got a t-bar in the mouth. I still wear that scar with pride.
My daughter is not a skier. We live in the outskirts of New York City, and while we have friends who truck up to Vermont or upstate or the Berkshires to ski every weekend, we do not. She's had a lesson, she loves snow, but she's not a skier. And occasionally that makes me sad. But now? Now she wants to be a snowboarder.
I let her stay up late to watch Chloe Kim win gold on the halfpipe in PyeongChang. My daughter loves the Olympics. She's been twice -- Vancouver in 2010, where she was too young to understand it as anything other than a big party, and London 2012, where at the age of five she saw Ussain Bolt run and Gabby on the bars and watched diving, swimming, and beach volleyball from the good seats. She loves the Olympics. In kindergarten, she told a kid on the bus that her parents "invented the Olympics," her Wenlock backpack sitting firmly between her feet.
I now watch her watching more than I watch myself. Fixated on the screen at breakfast before school watching luge; getting her homework done quickly so she can get back to the
alpine action; running home from the bus stop to breathlessly ask "WHAT HAPPENED?" Last night, watching Kim, recognizing her awesomeness, her charm, her complete badass virtuosity, my daughter decided she wanted to snowboard. It was a great ending to a day that began out of nowhere with this simple question:
"Mom, do men play ice hockey too?"
I'd say she's learning a lot from the Olympics.