Olympic skier Mikaela Shiffrin pens emotional essay on ‘maze’ of grieving father’s death

Olympic skier Mikaela Shiffrin knows she might never stop grieving the sudden 2020 death of her father, Jeff. And she’s OK with that.

In an emotional essay published by The Players’ Tribune on Thursday, Shiffrin offers new details and perspective on her grieving process over the past two years, and how it has impacted her on the slopes. She describes grief not as linear “like a climb up a mountain,” but rather “more like a maze.” And winning, she writes, is no antidote.

“After Beijing, when I turned things around and ended up winning the World Cup, people would say things to me like, ‘Mikaela, now that you’re in a much better place…’ And I never said it out loud, but I would always think: ‘Am I?’ ” Shiffrin writes in the essay.

“We equate winning with being OK, and failure with being not OK. The real truth is that I’m neither OK nor not OK. It really depends on the day, and it has almost nothing to do with how fast I came down a mountain.”.

STAY UP-TO-DATE: Subscribe to our Sports newsletter now!

Explore more:  Ogwumike, No. 5 Stanford top Washington St 84-64

Shiffrin, 27, has won three Olympic medals and 12 World Cup titles but is coming off a disappointing performance at the 2022 Beijing Olympics, where she was favored to win multiple medals but finished no higher than ninth in any of her individual events. She proceeded to win the overall World Cup title in March.

Shiffrin writes in The Players’ Tribune that she still doesn’t know what happened to her at the Olympics.

“(People) want some kind of answer. And I genuinely don’t have one,” she writes. “I could give you the media answer that I always give. I could put on a brave face and tell you some generic thing. But the real truth is… I don’t know.”.

Shiffrin does suggest, however, that her father’s death has changed her mindset during competition. She writes that she struggled “just to not feel guilty for doing the thing that he loved to do.

“When I knew that I had a chance to win my first race after his death, I had this really surreal moment at the top of the mountain before my second run,” Shiffrin writes. “I knew that if I had a good run, then I’d win. But if I won, then I’d be winning in a reality where my dad isn’t here to experience it. And I was asking myself, ‘Do I want to even exist in this reality?’ “.

Contact Tom Schad at [email protected] or on Twitter @Tom_Schad.

Related Posts

Terms & Conditions

Maybe you are interested Missouri visits Ole Miss for conference matchup Rolling Stone Ronnie Wood talks about scary lung cancer diagnosis An emotional Madonna honors gay teacher…

Return & Refund Policy

Maybe you are interested Childs, Barcello help BYU beat Utah St. at Beehive Classic Clark’s career-high 44 points lead No. 21 Iowa women to win Reed helps…

Cookies Policy

Maybe you are interested With Messi at his best, Barcelona had no title rival In California: Yes, homeless people are from your town Here’s how Pete Davidson’s…


Maybe you are interested soccer booed cocoa high school football Kevin McCarthy elected 55th House speaker, quashes GOP rebellion with major concessions Lopez comes up big, Bucks…

Privacy Policy

Maybe you are interested Utah Jazz beat Sacramento Kings 103-97 for 9th straight win No. 22 Kansas goes for 1st road win vs. Iowa St. since ’08;…


Maybe you are interested Russia’s slowest WCup stadium starts construction Tenn. lawmaker seeks seat belts for school buses in wake of crash Cardinals roll, Fitzgerald becomes youngest…