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The sacrifices of Olympic mums

The sacrifices of Olympic mums

Sun July 29, 2012 11:36am

AS one of Australia's best Olympic hopefuls, 20-year Emily Seebohm has made sacrifices to get to London.

But win or lose Monday, there’s one person who also made compromises to get her to this point and that’s her mum Karen.

It’s a familiar scenario for anyone who has kids and more so when those kids move into the elite level.

But none of those Olympic mums who met yesterday to swap stories and share a laugh, would have it any other way.

“Early mornings, driving them to training, long days, I work myself, Emily has three other brothers, cooking meals, cleaning, washing dishes washing towels the list is endless I suppose really,” Karen said as she and a dozen other Aussie Olympian's mums prepared to be rewarded by one of the major Olympic sponsors P&G with meals, manicures and makeovers.

“As mums you want to help them achieve their goal so for us its been a four-year plan and we’ve had good and hard times during those four years.

"To be here this week is a wonderful achievement for Emily and we are truly honoured just to be here to watch her perform and swim at her best.''

Maralyn Webster, whose daughter Rowena is a water polo player, said she had to be prepared to get up at 4.30am day after day, year after year and even became her gym training partner when there was no one else to do it.

“There’s been sacrifices, financially too, but its great being part of it too, you embrace it and be part of it,” she said.

Sheryn Hosking remembers when daughter Chloe announced she wanted to be a champion athlete and that was at age nine in 2000 in Sydney as she sat with her family watching Cathy Freeman take gold.

Twelve years later and she is rewarded by being able to watch Chloe in the cycling road race; so too Veronica Grant whose son Andrew is on the Olympic volleyball team, all sacrifices are worth it.

“You just have to be there for them to support them,” she said.  

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