Winds (Maybe Just Breezes) of Change.

Dear Friends and Family:

I’ve come to the (very difficult) decision to take a medical waiver and take the year off from skeleton to better focus on healing my body and my mind. Most of you know that it hasn’t been the easiest summer for me, with the persisting back injury, the fire that effectively evicted me from my cozy little apartment, and the inconsistent housing options after that event.

It’s been one of the hardest preseasons I’ve ever had in my athletic career, and the stress I’ve been carrying on my shoulders has not gotten lighter with the start of the skeleton season and US Team Trials. After many discussions with my head coach, strength coach, parents, and a handful of others, I have come to realize that I need to take care of myself first and foremost before anything, even the sport I’ve come to love so much.

I am not walking away from skeleton, by any means. In my gut, I know it’s not time for that yet and I have more to contribute and more to learn about the sport and myself. But I also know in my gut that something needs to change in order for me to be a better athlete and a healthier person.

I will be moving out of Lake Placid, and staying family in Seattle, Washington while I heal my mind and body. Details are still being figured out, which is why I’ve neglected to mention this huge, life-changing event. Taking the season off was certainly not an easy decision to come to, and I’m still struggling to say the words out loud, but I know in my gut that I need to take a year and get my back healed and, probably way more importantly right now, my mind healed.

Thanks for all of your continued support! I love you all!

Lauren

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