I have always been a fan of gymnastics. I remember seeing Dominique Dawes flip, flip again and land on a balance beam and felt all my Black girlhood affirmed! I also knew when I saw Gabrielle “Gabby” Douglas whup the competition in the Beijing Olympics? Chile, lookahere! I was HERE for Gabby! I was so, so proud of her–Mama level proud!
With Simone?! There is something about when I saw her stand on the corner of the floor exercise on the qualifying event before the Rio Olympics. The sheer determination in her face. The stance she had,with shoulder rounded which said: “You believe in the hereafter? Then you know what I’m here after.”
As I followed her successes and career leading up to Rio, I knew that she was going to be something to reckon with. I knew that Rio should be taking no prisoners and coming to blow everyone–in the whole world at Rio at that point–off her spot! I was ready and here for it.
The one thing that struck me, the thing that make me know she was a force of nature, was when Nastia Lukin said that talk about Simone Biles being a champion of a higher caliber was premature.
When Nastia, the last female US All-round Olympic champion before Gabby Douglas, said this about Simone? Oh, I knew she had it! I knew Simone and all her talent and power where going to give all the damn smoke! Allait! When Simone stuck every landing? Every flip flawless? Ran like fam had a battery to get these vaults? I screamed like she was my daughter!
Simone is now the most decorated American gymnast of all time. Black or White. Who is surprised? Not I. Who didn’t think she could do it? Not I. Who is pressed about it? The same group of people that think Serena Williams is on drugs or overrated (fun fact: She is neither.).
Get em, Simone! Get all of ’em–one medal at a time.
P.S. As quiet as it’s kept, I’m ready for HER to be the most decorated Olympian ever and unseat Michael Phelps. I’m. Just. Saying.
[image from medium.com and tvguide.com]