2/24 Tribute to Kobe and Gianna

I have been personally touched by Kobe and Gianna’s loss and wanted to honor their memory by writing a special post in my personal blog.

I am not a big fan of basketball, but if I had to choose a sport to watch, basketball would be it without hesitation.

I was debating about writing this post.  I wanted my blog to just focus on my personal experiences growing up in Mexico and how I adjusted living in the U.S. after I moved here.  When I heard the news of Kobe and Gianna’s helicopter crash that Sunday morning, I was shocked and, as the days and weeks went by, I thought I was just going to put this news aside like other celebrities’ news that pass away unexpectedly.  However, I soon realized this was going to be different and would be something I could share as part of my blog.

I was never a sports player, but I do remember that as a freshman in high school I tried for the basketball team.  At first it was fun doing all those new warm-up exercises with a team of other girls.  However, just learning how to play basketball for the first time as a fifteen-year old freshman in high school was difficult for me.  I knew then basketball wasn’t for me and didn’t continue playing after that first semester.

The great lesson I learned from this experience is that you have to try new things, you have to push yourself to new challenges and at least be able to say that you tried and did your best.

The news of Kobe and Gianna’s loss brought back these highs school memories and struck a chord within me.  Perhaps the reason why it has impacted me so much, even though I didn’t know him personally, is because I am also a parent.  I’m a mother of a beautiful nine-year old who reminds me of Gianna.  Thinking about that makes me ponder about my own daughter –her dreams, her aspirations, how she seems me, and how I see her, as well.

Perhaps one reason why Kobe and Gianna’s story has touched many people is because it reminds those of us who are parents of our own kids.  Kobe was, when all is set and done, just a father who wanted to help his daughter live her dream.

Every time I hear about Gigi and her dream of becoming a basketball player one day, I am brought to tears.  The notion of the dreams that never came to be gets me every time.  Gigi had her eyes and hopes set high; she was ready to go and be a star like her Dad.

Today, I tuned into the Los Angeles Lakers YouTube channel to watch Kobe and Gianna Bryant’s Celebration of Life and it was really emotional.  The one speech that really touched me was Vanessa Bryant’s tribute to her daughter and husband.  When I hear all the wonderful things that her daughter did for her, her personality, and the little things she did to make her mom smile, it makes me cry.  Vanessa said her daughter was kind, thoughtful, and loving; three qualities that my own daughter also exemplifies.  She said of her daughter that her motto was, “there is no act of kindness that is too small to make a difference in someone’s life.”

I think about Gianna and my own daughter and it makes me think of how important it is to develop a deeper relationship with my own daughter; by spending quality time with her and sharing a passion with her.  Like Kobe did with Gigi.

Kobe and Gianna have inspired me to better my relationship with my own daughter.  I want to be more patient, kinder and more compassionate with her.  But most importantly, I want to spend more quality time with my daughter and I thought of the perfect way to do that starting right now: running.

My daughter and I both enjoy running.  We started running last year, but stopped once school ended before summer.

I believe sharing a common passion with my daughter will help us bond and running is something that we both enjoy and have fun doing.

If Kobe could share a word of wisdom with all of us right now, what would he say to us parents about our relationship with our daughters? I think he would say that we need to be grateful for each moment we have with our children, to spend time with them, and be an involved parent.  I think he would say we need to be interested in the things that our children are passionate about and share that passion with them.

I look at my own daughter and I feel grateful and blessed to be able to hug her right now and show her how much I love her.  I know I was inspired by Kobe’s relationship with his daughter to get out there and do more with my own daughters.  There are many things that I am passionate about that I want to share with them.

Kobe and Gianna, your memory will live with us forever.  You have truly inspired us! May all of you, including the other parents and daughters who were in that fateful helicopter ride, rest in peace.

Kobe and Gianna Bryant – I imagine them looking down at us like this from Heaven.

 

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