Jamie Anderson rides whirlwind of gold-medal attention in Sochi
Ryan Summerlin February 11, 2014
SOCHI,Russia — Jamie Anderson sat down in a salon chair at the Procter and Gamble House on Monday night, leaned all the way back, and kicked up her feet.
The last 36 hours had been a wild ride, and there was no end in sight.
She normally uses clear quartz and moonstone to harness her sacred energy, but all the energy she needed was coming from the gold medal that hung around her neck.
“Chaos,” she said of her last day. “It’s just been like one thing to the next. Lots of media and lots of cool outlets and lots of talking about the same thing over and over again. But it’s but fun to embrace it and bring back that gratification for everything I’ve worked toward and being able accomplish such a huge goal of mine.”
“I never really imagined this would all happen. It’s still really surreal. It hasn’t really sunk in yet for all of us. For my family, it’s the same way. It’s kind of unreal.”
The expectations had been enormous for Anderson, who came in as the gold-medal favorite in the Olympic debut of slopestyle snowboarding. The 23-year-old South Lake Tahoe, Calif., native was able to stomp her final run in Sunday’s final to take home the gold.
Now she’s seeing her life change, at least for now. She’s gotten so many texts that she hadn’t even read them all, and feared her phone would stop accepting them. She is doing nonstop interviews and will leave to go to New York in a couple of days, where she’ll appear on the “Tonight” show. That morning, she had been featured extensively on the “Today” show with fellow slopestyle gold medalist Sage Kotsenburg, which she called the craziest thing that’s happened to her so far since winning gold.
She said it’s a bit strange to know she’s being featured so widely in media at home, but she’s still trying to process it.
“It’s pretty cool for sure,” she said. “I never really imagined this would all happen. It’s still really surreal. It hasn’t really sunk in yet for all of us. For my family, it’s the same way. It’s kind of unreal.”
Anderson was at the Procter and Gamble House as part of the “Thank You, Mom” campaign. Families of athletes — especially moms who have sacrificed so much to get their kids to the Olympics — can go to the house for some rest and relaxation and to get pampered at the salons within the house.
Jamie’s mom, Lauren, was there, as were Jamie’s five sisters. They laughed and caught up as they prepared to leave Sochi with some of the greatest memories of their lives.
“Probably my moment on the podium down at the awards ceremony,” Anderson said when asked what will be her most vivid memory from Sochi, “It was something that I’ve dreamed of for so long, but I had no expectations for what it would be and what it would feel like. It was such an amazing moment. Seeeing the huge crowds and my family there and my dad and spirit grandma, it was absolutely out of this world.”
She said she was looking forward to coming back to Tahoe and saying thanks to the community.
“To everyone back home in Tahoe I can’t thank you enough for all the love and support you have brought to me,” she said. “It’s such an amazing community and I can’t wait to come back and celebrate with everyone.”
But, for now, at 10:20 on Monday night in Sochi, she had to get going, She had another interview to do.
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