Some good news has come up since my last entry. My girlfriend, Jessica Hardy, got news Friday that CAS (Court of Arbitration for Sport) has ruled in her favor. Find the story here.
It's been a long time coming and quite the journey. It's hard to put into words the emotion that comes with this news. I remember when Jess told me over the phone that she somehow had tested positive back in 2008. I could hear the fear in her voice and found myself speechless. I couldn't get a word out of my mouth because I was in such shock. The news came the day before I was to fly to Singapore for a Swiss Olympic Team preparation camp. I decided to drive to Palo Alto (Stanford) where Jess had her preparation camp. On the way there, I had so many thoughts and questions that I totally spaced out behind the wheel and bumped into the car in front of me. Fortunately, no one was hurt and it was just a fender bender. I continued to Stanford and arrived to an emotional wreck of a girlfriend. I was the first of her family to see her when she got the bad news and I was just a few meters away when she got the good news Friday.
We were in the middle of a main set when she got the news last Friday. I saw her getting out and pushed off the wall for my next swim. After about 5min she got back into the pool. She gave me the thumbs up but I saw her face was red and that she was crying. I didn't know if she was trying to show that she was being strong or if it was good news. I swam towards her and we hugged in the middle of the pool. She whispered "WE DID IT" and broke down. I couldn't have been happier. She cried and let out all of her emotions; the emotions that she's been keeping inside for the last 2 years. She was finally able to let loose.
It's been a tough 2 years. But I'm over the moon that the verdict turned out the way it did. Jess has been so supportive of my swimming during her suspension. She would motivate me to work harder when I was beat down. She continuously told me to swim for both of us. That always lit the fire under my backside. The most valuable and important thing she ever said to me was: "Swim, not because you have to, but because you CAN. Savor every opportunity you have to race, because it can be taken away from you really quickly."
I want to leave all my readers today with a thought: Love what you do and never take it for granted!