I guess first off, the thing I am most thankful of is that everyday I wake up. And everyday I wake up I put in the work for everything I have.
I'm thankful for my family, not to be cliche or anything, but they obviously played a big part in molding me into who I am today. Thankful for my dad, who always supported me especially thru skating, I still don't know how we made the numbers work but we did.
Thankful for my brother, who even though it may have never seemed like it you pushed me thru practices I thought I was too tired to go on, because I'd never let you beat me.
Thankful for my coaches, especially Jeff, who has played the biggest role in the opportunities that are presented to me today. Without his guidance and coaching I probably would have left skating all together many years ago. More then that Jeff always coached me as a person instead of an athlete. He always made sure I knew that at the end of the day, skating is just skating: it doesn't change the person I am win or lose. I still and always will remember the first and only time I ever quit in a race. It was at a small race in Ohio, I was a Freshman but I was skating back-to-back Sophomore then Freshman. In the Sophomore race I put half a lap on the field and then fell twice on the last lap. For the freshman race I thought I could take it easy and rest for the next Sophomore race, I wasn't prepared and someone beat me and I quit with half a lap to go. Jeff told me if I ever did it again I could find a new team to skate for because if I was going to win like a champion then I was going to lose like one too.
I am thankful that for the work ethic that so many helped instill in my over the years. Coaches: all of them. Teachers, family, movies whatever it was I'm glad it happened. I don't have nearly enough talent to even attempt to rely on it.
I'm thankful that I fell in love with a sport that gave me more then I could ever give it. Yes, I am talking about my inlines. I met thousands of people, traveled to so many places, learned so many things, and most of all it never asked for anything in return. Some of my favorite moments were on the road practicing alone, just the soft vibration of the pavement beneath my feet. Whenever I needed it to be there it always was, the road never told me no, never told me I wasn't good enough or my technique was bad. Whenever I laced up my skates, left then right, the road was ready for me.
I am of course, thankful for the opportunity I was given to be apart of the WHiP program and allow me to test myself on the ice. Obviously things have turned out well for me and who knows what the future holds.
I am thankful for my coach this season, Jae Su Chun, who was able to see something in me that I couldn't see myself. Was able to take me from an inliner with blades instead of wheels and turn me into an ice skater that benefits from an inline background. He took a chance picking me for the NRP program this year without knowing anything about me and in a few months managed to put me in contention.
Lastly, I am also thankful for food and Duck Dynasty. Food because I am a fat kid at heart, and Duck Dynasty because it is the greatest show to ever surface.
I hope everyone takes care and remembers we are nothing without the people that got us here.