I don’t cry much. In fact, barely at all.
I can be as emotional as the next unemployed guy, but tears are not something that I usually feel.
As unbelievable as it sounds, I don’t remember shedding one tear when my father died of a sudden heart attack nearly eight years ago.
Please don’t misunderstand me, that was by far the worst day of my life and it took me many years to get over it, but for whatever reason, my broken heart and broken spirit didn’t include any tears.
I definitely can’t explain it, but the times that I do cry usually come out of nowhere.
Like last night.
I have always enjoyed watching the Olympic Games.
I don’t care if it is Summer or Winter, Spring or Fall would be fine too.
There is something very pure and real about watching athletes you have never heard of, competing in sports that you never watch.
I know that doesn’t make any sense, but when you consider the sacrifice that these amazing people have gone through for their brief moment in the spotlight, it is truly incredible.
Last night, for the first time in my life, I watched a full round of Men’s Moguls.
A few years ago, I had seen some highlights when skier, turned college football star Jeremy Bloom was all the rage.
But after a few seconds, I called him nuts and moved on with my day.
Last night, I was able to sit and watch... and enjoy these incredible, insane people.
If you haven’t seen it, the Moguls are a 24-second ride through the bumpiest slope you have ever seen and oh by the way, two different times in those 24 seconds, they flip off a ramp and get graded for it.
Well, last night’s winner was a 22-year old Canadian named Alexandre Bilodeau from Quebec. He became the first ever Canadian to win an Olympic Gold Medal on Canadian soil.
I’m sure that brought tears from British Columbia to Prince Edward Island, but it wasn’t the result that did it for me, but rather the story behind it.
Several times during the event, they showed Alexandre’s older brother Frederick, who was born with Cerebral Palsy, a disease that severely affects body and muscle movement.
As you might imagine, the broadcast built up the relationship between the two brothers, but as you watched the evening develop there was no doubt that this love was real.
When Bilodeau, the final skier of the night, earned the highest score of the night and walked away with the gold, it was a moment nobody watching will ever forget.
Seeing his brother in the stands celebrating as if it were him, was more than I could handle.
I welled up and could literally feel the tears falling out of my eyes.
I suppose being the father of three healthy, active and fantastic children played a part in my emotion.
I realize how blessed I am and could not imagine the pain and frustration that the Bilodeau family has endured through the years.
Like most people on the unemployment train, I have been emotionally derailed several times.
Thankfully, I usually get back on track pretty quickly when I realize how truly fortunate I am.
After seeing Alexandre the Great last night and perhaps more importantly, what it meant to Frederick, once again, I have nothing to complain about.