Raising exceptional children is a goal that all of us parents strive for and that is why I think Ondina Lopez is one exceptional mom. She has managed to raise not one, but four outstanding children. Her kids Steven, Jean, Mark, and Diana have all reached the world elite level in Taekwondo. Steven, Mark and Diana made history when they each won gold at the 2005 World Taekwondo Championships too. The excitement overflowed when they became the first three siblings in any sport to claim the World Championship titles at the same event. Now the excitement level has risen even more as Ondina prepares to see two of her children, Steven and Diana Lopez, prepare to compete in London for the 2012 Olympic Games! They are the heart of the “First Family of Taekwondo.”
Ondina represents the true meaning of what it is to be a supportive mother. Supporting and nurturing our children’s talents and dreams is crucial in helping to increase their chances of attaining them. In Ondina’s case, when her children were young, she set up a space for them to practice their Taekwondo in the garage. During the winter season, she would run the dryer, so that the garage would warm up for them, and then during the summer she always made sure that there was plenty of ice water on-hand to keep them cool and hydrated. I think that a great example of Ondina’s obvious support for her children comes from a quote in which her daughter Diana Lopez said about her, ”She’s taught me over the years how to be a strong, independent woman, how to carry yourself in a positive way and anything that my brothers can do, I can do. That’s what’s helped me along the way with any situation that I’ve been in.” Another testament to Ondina’s support of her children is her son Steven Lopez’s impressive record. He was the first Taekwondo fighter to win an Olympic gold medal and five back-to-back World Championships. As a matter of fact, she has a lot to be proud of regarding all of her children, as they were the family who made history at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China – with three siblings on the same U.S. Olympic Team and the fourth as their coach!
Motherhood means to me that we are the teachers, the guiders, the influencers, the cheerleaders, and the nurturers of our children. Even when we think our children aren’t listening, they are. I believe as a mother, my child is always looking to me to help steer her in the right direction. She looks to me for the answers and is in need of my approval and support in what she does. Positive affirmation is so important in our children’s social-emotional development. Even though my daughter is only 3 years old, I already find myself wanting to help her discover her natural talents. For instance, she has a natural love for books and is already reading. At her preschool, my husband and I were told that she is a gifted reader, so we set up a special “cubby” type of room that is made especially for her, and it is full of preschool books that she loves! She also seems to have a talent for music, particularly drums and piano, so of course music lessons will be in her near future too.
I believe mothers like Ondina Lopez are a wonderful example of a mother’s dedication to her children. I wish her family the very best during the 2012 Summer Olympics and always!
- Taekwondo fighter Steven López knows that his healthy, winning smile helps fuel his confidence during competition, and in life. This Olympic gold medalist and 2012 hopeful has partnered with Procter & Gamble Company (P&G), to share how a healthy oral care routine is an important part of his winning moments.
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