My thoughts and hope upon being an Olympic torch relay runner.
On July 14, I had the privilege of being a torch relay runner for Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games starting on July 23, 2021.
The sacred Olympic flame that I finally met had traveled one extra year from Olympia. It was small but adorable and energetic.
Having grown up in Tokyo I was very active in sports where I learned so much through spending time with teammates and rivals.
When I was a junior athlete, so many parents, coaches and supporters gathered to not only cheer for us but also provide food and drinks to avoid heatstroke and other possible physical damages.
Their support went beyond organizations and classes we belonged to. For someone with few relatives, the people I meet at these sports events became another family to me. To this day, I still consider sports as a big family.
All the athletes who come together in Tokyo in summer of 2021, still a very challenging time all around the world, were also once upon a time junior-athletes just like me.
I imagine they went through some hard challenges and difficult times.
Hoping that the little flame I carried would light “the place all athletes and supporters longed and aimed to get to”, I decided to participate as a torch runner with sincere wish to relay the thoughts and wishes of all torch runners who ran before me.
I believe the Olympic torch is also the flame to light the dreams of children.
However, due to the worldwide pandemics, I certainly understand there are diverse sentiments and realize that there are those who decided not to participate in relaying the Olympic spirit symbolized by the torch.
My desire to carry and relay the torch to show my support to athletes never wavered, but at the same time I also realize that different thoughts and options that were voiced and presented are equally important.
Honestly, I, too, worry how Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games 2020+ may be perceived in the global community.
We are the world 定期