In Life #ThereAreNoOrdinaryMoments
Monday, June 22, 2015 at 11:47AM
Sergio Lopez Miro in #ThereAreNoOrdinaryMoments, Bolles, Cobi, Family, Family, Harley, Sandy, Sergio Lopez, Sergio Lopez Miro, Singapore

It has been over a year from my last posting and a lot of people probably thought that I was done posting.  No way Jose ;-)  My only excuse is that over these past 12 months a lot of things have happened in my life and my family’s life and I just could not find the time to write and post.  Many times I sat down to write but fell asleep on top of the laptop ;-)

These past twelve months have been a roller coaster of emotions and great experiences for me and my family, both personally and professionally.  Moving to Singapore after being at The Bolles School for almost eight years has been, to say the least, interesting while also an amazing process and a huge growing experience at all levels.

First of all, it was very hard to make the decision of leaving Bolles professionally.  But most important it was very hard to let go of the amazing group of coaches and swimmers I had the privilege to work with every day, and the great support we had from the parents of the swim team.  The transition to Singapore has not been easy at all, but I believe it has so far been very good and we are all (Family and myself) moving in the right direction.

To me the most important thing in my life is my family. My wife Sandy is a real trooper and I can’t thank her enough for putting up with my goals/dreams with swimming, but most important for always believing in me and keeping us (Harley, Cobi and me) moving in the right direction.  She has been the strong one, trying to keep each one of us in the right frame of mind while coping with her emotions of leaving everything behind and many times feeling hopeless and lost.  If I had to name two heroes in my life without hesitation I would say my wife Sandy and my mother Maria Lluisa. 

Today I wanted to write about the transition from Bolles to Singapore, but this is what just came out of my interesting brain while listening to some good music ;-)  Next time I will share what the first six months of coaching have been like here in Singapore, but now I feel that I need to share with all the coaches out there how important it is to really embrace your family.  One of the things that I have to give credit to Coach Bob Groseth is that he really tried to make me understand that my family always came first and that I could not lose track of them.  Even with all the work we had to make sure the Northwestern University Men’s Swimming & Diving team was moving to the top, Bob always placed my wife and children in front of everything.  He became family for my kids and he really helped me to never forget it.  At Bolles, one of the first things I did was to make sure that the coaches, who had children, always had the opportunity to go and see their son or daughter at school plays, birthday parties, sporting activities etc… I know it is a very hard thing for us coaches to understand that “Yes we can miss a practice if it is for the good of our own children”.  Remember that we end up taking care of everybody else’s children better than our own and that is not right.  One of the things that I really found out is that swim parents really appreciate that we (coaches) take time off to take care of our own children.  So please never forget about it.  I know it is hard but at the end of the days our children should be our top priority.

I will share with you a story that really made a huge impact in my life and that taught me a huge lesson about my own persona.  One night in September of 2006 when I was working at West Virginia University talking with my daughter Harley right before she went to sleep, she looked at me and told me: “Papa, when are you going to come to the most important meet of my life?” at that point I probably looked so lost and puzzled and right before I could open my mouth she said “Yes, the Stealey Meet is the most important meet of my life and you have missed these past two years” (the meet is the summer league championship for our area).   I believe I said “I am sorry” but before I could say anything she told me straight to my face “don’t promise me that you will be there next year because you will find any excuse to go recruiting, you always do”.  That was a low blow that I guess I deserved and also a big wake up call.  At that moment I promised to myself that I would make sure that I would go to the meet no matter what.  Well around the end of May 2007 (nine months later) I accepted the position at the Bolles School and they needed me right away.  So now I had a dilemma, do I leave right away and miss my daughter’s most important event in her life (July 13-14) and move to my new position where they had no Head Coach since April, or do I make sure I attend the meet.  Well I spoke with the Head Master and he allowed me to start July 16th and I was able to attend the most important event of my eight year old daughter.  I can tell you that it was one of the best experiences in my life just watching how proud my daughter was watching me watch her and just being there at the meet as a dad.  That really was no ordinary moment, and one that really changed my understanding of the reason why we have children. 

My mother told me a long time ago “Sergio remember that your children come to this world to teach you about yourself”.  I probably thought at that time that my mother was just trying to tell me that you will see how much pay back you will have for everything that you have put me through ;-).  But she was right 100%.  My daughter taught me (and keeps teaching me daily) a great lesson that night and nine months later at the meet that I can’t ever forget.  So my message to you coaches (and any parent that reads this post) is that you should never lose track of your children’s life and how important you are in their development and well-being.  Believe me they will be dysfunctional like you and I are, but hopefully by these teaching moments that our children have with us we can become better parents and we can help them be a bit less dysfunctional and really have a great internal and loving life.

I can also tell you that over these past few months I have learned a lot from Sandy, Harley and Cobi about being resilient and how important it is that we take care of each other at all levels but especially at the emotional level.  As I said at the beginning of the post it has been a roller coaster of emotions this past year and I have to thank my family for never giving up and always trying to push forward to make the best out of this great life adventure that we started together 25 years ago.

Well, I better stop this one since I have to get ready for the afternoon practice.  Hope it makes sense and that I was able to share some good stuff.  Remember that in life #ThereAreNoOrdinaryMoments and the only thing we need to do is to take a deep breath, close our eyes and when we open them just appreciate everything that is happening around. 

Thanks for reading this one and enjoy and make the best out of your journey my friends!

Article originally appeared on Sergio Lopez Miro Olympic Swimmer & Olympic Coach (http://sergiolopezmiro.com/).
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