MONTREAL – In three months, we will all gear up for the NBA’s, NHL’s playoffs and The Invictus Games.
Good things come in three.
It’s been 6 years since we witnessed the very first Invictus Games. After seeing the Warriors Games in 2013, Harry, The Duc of Sussex, saw first-hand the power of sports as a helpful tool to heal physically, psychologically and socially for the men and the women that suffered from injuries and illness after serving on the battlefield.
Prince Harry is the perfect patron for this cause because of his experience as a soldier in Afghanistan. He knows about the trauma of being a soldier. He lived it 24/7 on the field and after his journey, he was never shy to talk about the big elephant in the room that is mental illness.
Of course, he is the perfect patron because he walks the walk from being a soldier and from doing everything in his power to advocate about the power of sport for generating a better understanding for those who serve in the battlefield by a rehabilitation support system (physical, psychological and social).
The Invictus Games are brotherhood games. Everyone is a winner. The participants are reliving this brotherhood and this sisterhood fraternity they were used while in the army. I can’t wait to see the smile and the determination of every athlete in a few months.
I will be honest with you guys, I never been patriotic. Actually, I was raised to be a very pacific human being and I still believe in this philosophy. Something changed in my mind when I f saw Msgt Israel Del Toro Jr receiving the Pat Tillman Award at the 2017 ESPY Award. I realized that those men and those women are coming back to their family a very different person than when they left to serve. Ismael’s acceptance speech made me realized that he is more than a Superman.
He is a man with an unbelievable spirit of perseverance and he is not the only one.
When the soldiers are coming back home, they may face a bigger fight than the one they did fight before. They come back broken. The traumas are enormous and the PTS are both their constant worst nightmare.
Their family members realized that the person in front of them is not well and they feel helpless. Those soldiers feel more and more isolated and the suicidal thoughts are their constant companion. It’s a living nightmare.
We (the population) focused on their physical scars but we are forgetting they need to be taking care of their invisible wounds aka their mental illnesses. The Invictus Games were created, those hard conversations started and Harry was the perfect warrior to change the conversation about the well-being of a soldier went he or she comes back home.
They need to be taking care of and they need the right support to deal with their pains, especially the one that we don’t see.
I love sports, I love competition but I love the camaraderie between friends that became family because they shared a special bond. The Invictus Games is the right place to be to witnesses all the things I just wrote in my last sentence.
They will still be looking out for each other, but instead of being on the battlefield, it will be on a basketball field, a swimming pool or a soccer field.
If you want to see the definition of brotherhood and sisterhood, please, check out The Invictus Games on tv or if you can travel, please go see it in The Hague.
The month of May will be unforgettable.