I was driving to the town where I grew up to spend a long weekend when the calls came: Megan had made the 2012 Olympic team. After four long years of hard work, this part of the dream had come true: for her, a second chance to medal at the Olympics. For us, a second chance to travel to the Olympic Games to watch our first-born compete on the the world stage.
I was overwhelmed with relief. The selection process had been exhausting, both mentally and physically, and everyone knew that only four of the women at the quad camp would be named to the team. There were so many fine athletes who trained long and hard who were not named to the team, including Megan’s 2008 Olympic doubles partner. While I was overjoyed for Megan, I was also sad for the athletes who will not be making the trip to London.
Megan experienced a bit of that disappointment in 2006. She moved to Princeton the day after her college graduation and started training with the national team. She trained all summer, but when the team was announced, her name was not on the roster. Using Frequent Flier miles, she and I took a little trip to the Bahamas where we could commiserate about her disappointment.
Since we returned from that trip, she has been singularly focused on one goal–winning an Olympic medal. She has trained the whole time. I can’t recall that she’s taken a week off from training since then. Even trips home and to our place in Arizona have revolved around training–finding places with adequate facilities, and getting access to them. (Many thanks to University of Minnesota Head Rowing Coach Wendy Davis for making special trips to the boathouse to let Megan in on cold, snowy mornings.)
Megan posted on megankalmoe.com today that moving from Olympic Hopeful to Olympian requires more than hope–it requires incredibly hard work. When I heard her speak to the University of Minnesota rowing squad at Christmastime, her message was simple: it all boils down to training. Kudos to you, Megan, for your amazing dedication to your goal. We know you will will achieve your goal.