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’18 Team Missouri: Lynna Hodgson (Final Post from USA Games)

These posts come from track and field athlete Lynna Hodgson. They were originally posted on her personal blog and re-posted here with her permission. They are unedited.

Hodgson, Lynna_Track

Ok WOW! What a great week I just experienced, not only I had some laughs (will talk about it later) but I also surprised myself, and I watched my other teammates on the athletes team, saw how they grew in a year!

First thing first, What I been doing since I got home from the games, I tried to sleep in the first morning I returned, that didn’t happen! I woke up at 7am! That wasn’t in my plans. So I decided to get ahead start on the laundry. I also unpacked my pack pack and my suitcase, let me tell you…that was SO much fun….NOT! It’s still in my room, on the floor! I guess I need to work on that, one job at a time! I also showed my medals off at my grandma’s. Jesse didn’t bring them to my grandma’s. I also showed them to my neighbor! She was SO shocked how big there were! Believe it or not, I was too when I saw them first! I was like….OH MY GOSH! The last past two days I been sorting my state pins I traded with other states, and I finally figured out that I’m missing only 4 pins, I think that’s pretty good for my first time. I’m missing Utah, Southern California, District of Columbia (that was a hard one) and  Georgia.
My thoughts of the USA games:
So when the team (Kansas City group) got on the plane, I had butterflies in my stomach, it wasn’t because of the plane ride, it was because, well I get nervous when I compete, I wish I didn’t. And if. I get nervous I won’t perform the best. So that’s why I was nervous on the plane. My goal was to show myself and my state, what I can do, and what I can accomplish! And that’s what I did! Before I competed in my events, I took deep breaths (couple of them), say in my head (that I can do it), (and this is what I’ve been training for a year for) and that helped me a lot! Plus my coaches gave me right words I was looking for. The competition was even match. I felt really good about that. The Opening Ceremony and the Closing Ceremony was great, great music! The only thing I didn’t like it was a big crowd. It was too much for me, but I think I handled it pretty well. It was really nice to meet other athletes from each state. I even became friends with some!
After the USA games:
When we aboard the plane to Kansas City, I was SO tired, but I didn’t sleep on the plane, my brother did. I slept on the bus. When we got off the plane, I was so shocked how many people I saw that cheered for us! That was awesome! I was so happy that I saw my aunt and my little cousin. Went to claim our bags, they were a lot of bags! Helped to get other bags, and found Jesse’s and mine. Said goodbye to everyone, I tried really hard not to cry, but I felt sad, but I know I’ll see them at State Competitions. I will definitely miss the monthly meetings and socialize with these great group of people, not just the athletes but the coaches as well. On our way home, I saw a van parked in our property, it has welcomed sign, that was SO awesome!
My goals after USA games:
I’ve decided to make goals for myself, I really think this was motivate me, I decided to keep working out and eating healthy, still doing blogs posts, keep in touch of my team MO 2018 family.
Top 5 highlights of the week of the USA games:
1. Won GOLD in my 100 meter run
2. When Brett scared the coaches and me (we were having a race, who would get on our floor first, us or Brett, we took the elevator).
3. Beating all of my scores of my events
4. Trading pins with every state (almost every state)
5. Experienced the best time of my life, I will never forget it!
Thank You’s:
I would like to say a BIG thank you to all of my family, friends, and my local and USA games coaches, for giving me this chance and supporting me in the past year.
And a BIG thank you to the Specail Olympics Missouri staff, without you, and this organization I wouldn’t have experienced this great journey, and having faith in me and believing in me.
I will continue to train and aim for World Games one day, maybe one day I can go, then my dreams will be fulfilled!
7-6-18 Getting Awards/ Closing Ceremonies
So we are getting our last awards today, I’m getting my bronze in the 200 meter run, then later today we have the opening ceremony! The music was fantastic! It was at a park like. There were a lot of people there! Helped Jesse find more state pins! Went back to our dorm, and I needed help with packing, went to bed! What a long day it was! But very fun!
7-7-18 Departure from Seattle to KCI

Woke up this morning around 6am, woke up and went to breakfast, came up to our rooms after breakfast and got our belongs, said goodbye to coach Curt, Coach Emily, and Emily (athlete). Got on the bus and go to the airport, I slept on the bus! I forgot to take my anxiety med for the security part, but I think I handled it pretty well!  Waited for our plane. I wanted to sleep but I couldn’t, but Jesse did! Took some awesome pics of the clouds, they look like cotton balls lol. The plane trip was almost 3hrs. Found out that athlete (Ty) was moving to Wyoming, So that was a little shock for me, but I said goodbye to him.

Ok I got home yesterday, in the early evening, when we got off the plane, we had a huge crowd of people to welcome us! What a treat that was!! Got our luggage and said our goodbyes, and my granddaddy, aunt and my cousin picked us up and having dinner at my grandmas. When we passed our hose, there was a sign saying welcome home on their van. That was neat! For dinner we have ribs, salad, pasta salad. Went home and unpacked, Henry was so happy to see me! Went to bed, I was really tired!