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Waking From The Dream With Dr. Kirsten Van Heerden


So the question that everyone that Oh come on it? When you're younger has an athlete will bigger than the gold you went to achieve? It's an interesting question that when I was young athlete and often talk to people about this and and say I was not one of those athletes. That's when I was young dreamed of being Olympic athletes. I think I just if I'm honest. I love swimming and I was super competitive additive so I swam. 'cause everybody just loved it and I was obviously That even from Gina level at school and I just love love being in the water and I'm super competitive in whatever ideas that kind of suited me and they just found my way within that then of course as a status train hard it was probably in just entered. High School is around twelve twelve and I decided to stop doing the sports. I used to do a little bit odd gymnastics until I grew six toll. I can't gymnastics to told to do it. I did a bit of basketball okay of Naples but of high jump but you as a win. It's too high school. I really try something. That was the thing that I wanted to do and really became focused on that from Yasser around twelve eighteen years of age End of mates genius African teens and progressed to some senior African team so my career kind of just suppose it flowed from nats and it was really just something to say. I love to end enjoyed competing in flow going on that. Have you find flamingos by one day being fined the pool one day. Anything I love this. I'm actually a mismatch and so when I was younger the young kid. The doctors That she takes me swimming because is being is pretty good for asthma. Actually a lot of Zuma's that I know have have esmer's well and so. She decided to take some swimming lessons. I have all the brother and he was going at the same time so I think it was convenient for her to take together. So y'all got into. It's probably from the age of roundabouts three. I was in the pool and really as I got in. I just remember accidentally loving being in the water and something that kind of came naturally as foes and we would spend some. I remember my my brother and I in the neighborhood children in our swimming pool and pain gains. And you're running around crazy. Certain has always been around horror and then we would have cepal days we would have family holidays at the beach McCain from the ages of love being in the water at the beach each say something to say from the Seemed seven affinity full. Lucky could I had asthma too. And my day run more doc icon. Brenham come out of it and now they okay. We'll get they're gonNA run so when you started kind of seeing you Kinda went all in on the Fleming economist at age twelve and Says at what point did you say I wanNA take this to be the next web for me. You almost around about that age. Say as I got into grade eight at high school in the the middle of great eight assay ahead some decisions to make around various different sports. I thought to myself at that point. You know what I couldn't imagine myself is carrying on gymnastics. I'd go into the provincial cuts for its net end soon with Nipple Hijab but I thought to myself you know when I finished school I can really see myself carrying on swimming. That was the one thing that I really love. And so has steadily from say probably that middle of great age. It was a conscious decision that this was something that I really wanted to do. And then by the end of Grade Eight said made my fist acid African junior team. And so I suppose I kind of got rewards straight away. Wait for that decision which was great because okay this on the right path yet and every year after that I was fortunate enough to make a team to travel whether whether it was to Europe or the states or something like that and compete and so getting those kinds of awards for your hard work really motivated me to keep going and keep the suing it. Sometimes when we these like at a young age we know it can not either you know give of competent world or you know kind of backfire on though so for you. What kind of cup? Humble you know an offensive you know you achieve great thing but always More work be done better. Yeah I I think there were a number of Vista. I think my family kicked my feet on the ground and I'm always incredibly grateful for that. You know when I was at home. It was very much you simply Chris. We don't care what swimming team rewritten you. Part of the family things that you need to do here so they say my family rarely did kind of keep my feet on the ground and as much as I say that I made some African something teams which I did. I was never travelling overseas. And being the best in the world from straightaway and even in South Africa. You know there was some competitive. The report. me so I think you had to in maybe at school level. It's a little bit easier into into the higher levels and other that had quite hard to beat the goal that was in front of me. I'm going to make the teams and you go the season. You realize WHOA. I'm at be good inside Africa but I'm not that great internationally and because of my competitive nature I think that was just kicked me pushing me motivation to push further rally and yes. The safe was both of those things in my family instrumental. Tremain Tal in just helping. Keep me grounded said lots of friends I think as well that were nonstop is unknown athletes. And she's saying to someone earlier today in the best possible way. I didn't really care about you. Know as it was really fantastic that you could go and just hang on him and not have to be kissed in the summit you could it just via self. I love the Laflin because he kriton yourself having a lot of time. You know like we don't really like her last call that we have to call them in our did any of being you know Kobe. The athletes Stand your kristen. Yeah exactly it has sometimes. Yeah people don't even know your name that would just use is a summer where you're the one at school is being called from the stage for example in assemblies and that you get whatever crisis that might be and as much as it was great right your identity entity can become wracked at the net. And I think all athletes union was the soft place to land this alternative world because the world of elite sport can actually be pretty cautioned. Tough and you need this other world that you can just be a selfish and self worth as well you know for me. And I'm sure we'll get onto this. You know not drawing that Ernie from my formats and the swimming pool being able to see self worth a posh from that and you hang out with friends that disliked you for you because you were doing one on the swimming pool thousand South I learned the hard way got hurt my tomato and along the athlete and I saw how the world kind of shifted for me a little bit. You know the longer no the guy like just another do not like oh different world at this way absolute is trying to figure that out and again talk a fad at old figured out. That didn't they. Were certainly times way. It was incredibly difficult when I didn't make team why didn't perform well. It's taught not enjoy yourself with from that it's hard not to see yourself as that and actually it was just off to school. I had qualified qualified for the Commonwealth Games. And Americans know the Commonwealth Games up all the Commonwealth countries are involved end. It's quite a major event and I'd qualified for it but some Africa have a standard way you have to make the qualifying time in the final at nationals and had been in the week eating up to the nationals. I didn't make time and I remember being completely devastated that a hedonist made the Commonwealth Games and it was almost a sense at that point of the second was who am. I haven't made this team. I say I remember so clearly thinking and family will love me but I had to go until my friends at this is what had happened and and your moment's started to realize that I couldn't only see myself as kristen head to also really make sure that I was seeing myself as someone else

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