Two weeks ago on the morning of Thursday, February 22nd, I told my Sassy small human to go find her Team USA hockey shirt. She asked me why and I told her I wanted to show her something.
Sassy brought me her shirt and I held it up for her. I said “Do you remember that you saw these women play last year and how you met some of them and they signed your shirt?” Sassy looked at me like I was crazy because their autographs are clear as day on her shirt. She nodded her head and had a confused look on her face.
I then told her, “See these all of these signatures? Well these ladies won the gold medal earlier this morning – you were sleeping, but they won. Hockey got the gold, kiddo!”
Sassy’s face lit up. She was in utter shock. She kept staring at her shirt, in awe that the players that signed her shirt play the same sport she does and won the biggest achievement in sports. I told Sassy she could wear her Team USA shirt to school, but Sassy said “Absolutely not, I don’t want it to get ruined! It’s going to be an at home shirt only.” I can’t say I disagree with her choice. Her Team USA shirt is that much more special to her now.
Here is a close up of Sassy’s Team USA shirt, signed by a few ladies from last year’s World Championship that was played here in Plymouth, Michigan!
As you can imagine, Sassy then asked to watch the highlights on the game before school. We watched Jocelyne Lamoureux’s shootout goal on a continuous loop. It was to the point I had to pry my phone from Sassy’s hands in order for her to get out of the car in the drop off loop in an orderly fashion that didn’t hold up the line.
Something else that was super cool to see, at the ice rink Sassy goes to for her hockey activities, there is now a poster of the USA women’s hockey team and across the poster it says “Welcome to Generation Girl”
With today being International Women’s Day, I can’t help but think of all the possibilities my small humans have now, especially in sports, specifically hockey. Their hopes and dreams are endless, and they’re inspired by the women who brought home the gold.
This is the first gold for the women’s hockey program since 1998, the first gold for Team USA hockey since the Miracle on Ice in 1980. Fun fact, it had been 38 years to the day that the Miracle on Ice occurred. The day where the names, Mike Eruizone, and Jim Craig became part of American History. Now, the names Lamoureux, Knight, Kessel, Duggan, Keller, and Rooney are going to be mentioned for years to come.
The 23 women have been on a national tour so to speak, since they left South Korea. They have traveled across the US going on numerous talk shows, morning shows and late night shows to discuss their success at the Winter Olympics.
Team USA even stopped by Ellen to talk about their Olympic experience. Ellen made sure to let her audience and viewers know that winning the gold medal wasn’t the only important thing that this Women’s team had done, but the fact that last year these women stood up for equality and demanded equal pay and fair treatment or else they would have boycotted the World Championship. With all of their accomplishments over the last year, Ellen chose to have the women’s Team USA jersey hang in her studio. This is only the second jersey to be on display at Ellen’s show – Drew Brees being the first.
This gold medal win, it is going to be a topic for a while – as it should be. Hockey needs growth more than ever, especially since NHL players were not able to attend the 2018 Winter games, but that is a whole other story.
Now that we have 23 women who not only stood up and demanded equality, but went out and showcased their talent and how hard they have worked the last four years since 2014, AND won a gold medal – hockey is a hot topic and for good reasons this time around. More girls are now signing up to play hockey because it is not just a male sport anymore, girl power is taking over and the future of hockey looks more fierce than ever.
Further Reading: Here is an article that explains what these women fought for