• June 17, 2024

He Said Two Words Confirming This Olympian’s Worst Nightmare, And Then…

The odds-on favorite for an all-around individual gold in women’s gymnastics at the Beijing Olympics, Shawn Johnson was America’s sweetheart in 2008.

Moments before her final routine, the 16 year-old saw the scores. The individual all-around gold was clearly out of reach.  Johnson finished the competition with three silvers and one gold. An impressive feat by any measure, the accomplishment didn’t quite fulfill America’s or Johnson’s expectations.

As the silver medal was placed around her neck during the medal ceremony, the event coordinator handing out the medals looked at her and said, “I’m sorry.”

Those two words confirmed Johnson’s worst nightmare: Second wasn’t enough. She arrived home to sharp criticism that sent her into a deep depression.

In her new short film, I Am Second, Johnson opens up about how it felt to win silver. She also talks about disappointment and depression, her struggle with body confidence, and something more important than bringing home the gold.

Published on YouTube on July 12, the roughly seven minute video is closing on 70,000 views. It includes a powerful message that transcends both sports and the Olympics:

 

 

H/T: Faith It

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