It was a moment of pure magic in Mar del Plata this afternoon when Addison got on the track for her 25 metre run at the World Transplant Games. As the youngest competitor she already had a huge fan base going into the event, but when the announcer gave the preamble for her run, the entire track stopped to watch. All her fellow athletes and their supporters, plus the very vocal members of Team Canada (and Team Addison) all cheered her on. Everyone was chanting, “Addison, Addison, Addison!”. It gives me goosebumps to describe it, and I get emotional when I think about it. The power and beauty of this precious gift of life was so palpable in those few minutes.
As the only competitor under the age of five, Addison easily won the gold medal. The Princess was overjoyed – that’s really the best way to describe her incredible zest and enthusiasm for the entire day. The only meltdown moment came when she hit herself in the face with her gold medal, but I suppose that is the risk of being a champion. She posed for pictures, high-fived dozens of people, and beamed that beautiful smile non-stop.
Another highlight moment came when Addison was the anchor in Team Canada’s women’s 4x100m relay team. She had a little bumble with the baton, despite several days of practising, but still a gold medal performance, even if she didn’t actually get any hardware for this one. The most beautiful part was when the Swiss anchor ran with her to the finish line.
If there are any doubters who still aren’t sure organ donation works, I challenge you to take a close look at Addison and the other 798 athletes here. Spend even a minute with one of them and I think you’d see strength, passion, perseverance and the deep appreciation for what it means to be truly alive.
Two more events for the Princess – long jump and ball throw – plus closing ceremonies tomorrow.
Elaine, Aaron and Addison