Lawrie Ready for Olympic Challenge

July 29, 2008

Hello everyone!!

Sorry it has taken me this long to write everyone. I have been 'very' busy. Can you believe it is only 10 sleeps until the opening ceremonies for the 2008 Olympics? WOW! I remember starting this journey in 2005, the summer I was heading into UW for my freshmen year. I remember telling myself, `you have three full years to prepare for this,' and here I am, 10 days away from the most important event of my life.

I'll be honest, I'm not as nervous as I thought I would be. I think sometimes as athletes we forget how much hay we have actually put into the barn and we just psych ourselves out. I feel as ready as I ever will be. The hard part right now is making sure you don't over train and you don't under train. We are doing the right amount of work right now and I feel like I'm in the best shape of my life. We head to China on the 5th of August and get settled in and then opening ceremonies are on the 8th. After that we have three days to practice from the 9th-11th and then we start play on the 12th against Chinese Taipei at 9:30 a.m.

I was told by the girls on my team that you are not allowed to send blogs while in the Olympic Village so as soon as we finish up and I get home I will let everyone know about my experience. We have a team website that will be updated that everyone can check up on. It is http://www.softball.ca/main.asp. That should be updated with scores as well as game times back at home.

As for the two months I have been gone it has been an experience. It's weird, it doesn't even feel like we have been gone for that long. We started out in Oklahoma where we had some good quality days to practice and then we were rewarded with some games against China, USA, and a Pro All-Star team. We got to watch some College World Series games as well. That was pretty hard for me to do remembering a year earlier that was us on that field playing. I would like to congratulate ASU on a great year and a great victory at the WCWS. It was fun to watch.

After Oklahoma, we set off on our tour playing against the pro teams. We played the Chicago Bandits, Rockford Thunder and then finished a four-game series playing the Akron Racers. Those 12 games went by quickly and then we were on our way to Ontario. We played the Aussies and Japan there in a tournament called the Tri-Nations Cup. After that was done, we headed to British Columbia for the Canada Cup, which is my favorite of them all. We get such a big home crowd there. I know for all the girls on the team, they get a home feeling when they step on to that field. The fans are amazing. I know I saw a couple of familiar faces out there as well from Seattle. I want to thank you all again for coming! I will see you guys soon.

After Canada Cup we had one day off to go home to our families and then we headed to Japan. It took us 10 hours and 50 minutes. I slept zero minutes so you could imagine how I was feeling once I stepped off the plane. After the plane ride we had to take a seven-hour bus ride to Sendai, Japan. We did not get to our hotel until midnight and I had barely slept. We were going on 17 hours of travel. That is the only part I hate about traveling!!

Once we headed into our rooms, it was time to call it a night. At 12:26 a.m. I was woken up to our whole room shaking. At first I thought it was a dream. It felt like we had a vibrating bed. It started to get worse and then I finally realized we were in an earthquake. A bad one! I woke my roommate up and said we needed to get up and go in the doorway close to the hallway and see what we need to do. Our whole team was out there and by the time we got out there the earthquake had stopped, but the building was shaking back and forth. That was probably the scariest moment of the tour for me. It was hard for me to sleep that night. I kept thinking there was going to be an aftershock and something would happen.

Nothing else happened that night which is good but that morning I turned on the TV and it turns out it was a 6.8 and the damage it had done to a lot of the buildings was very, very scary! I feel lucky that our team ended up all safe and sound. After that incident, we had games to concentrate on. We played three games while in Sendai. This takes us to yesterday where we had a six-hour bus ride to Chiba where we are right now. We stay here until the 5th and head out that day. Sorry I didn't get into much detail about the games. Like I said if you check out our website it will have all the results on there.

I just want to thank everyone who has been supporting me all this way. I feel so lucky to have the fan support like I do in Seattle. I feel very honored to have this opportunity to represent my country in this event. I have worked my whole life for this and now I just need to go out and play. I'm looking forward to seeing you all very soon! I have a quick poem I want you to read that my mom gave to me that I think about every single day.

I believe in youIn the things that are important to youAnd in the way you chooseTo live your life...

I believe that you can accomplishAnything you set out to do,That you have many talentsAnd the wisdom to use them well...

I believe that you have what it takesTo overcome obstaclesAnd to grow from every experienceLife brings your way...

I believe in your courage,Your compassion,Your integrity,And your strength...

I believeIn your goodness...

I believe in you.

Thank you all again! Miss you guys and cannot wait to get back to Seattle in the fall. Go Dawgs :)

Love,Danielle Lawrie # 15

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