Fatherhood will put a man through a lot, but it's a tremendous job, the best in the world - even better than playing basketball!" - Derek Fisher
Please excuse Derek, he probably doesn't know any better; what he wanted to say was or better yet what I'm saying is, "Fatherhood will put a man through a lot, but it's a tremendous job, the best in the world - even better than wrestling!"
I love my wrestling. I really do! I have been wrestling for over 18 years now, and there is a new challenge every day. For me, wrestling has a lot of similarities to fatherhood. "Once you've wrestled, everything else in life is EASY!" - Dan Gable said these words. However, I'm not sure he was a Father yet when he said them, so I'll let that slide!
Some people know this and some don't -- I got married to my wife, Haley, who has loved me since we were 3. I was just slower to come around! We got married on November 1st. That same day, I became a Father to a beautiful 6-year-old girl named Isabella.
Now, I've never experienced Fatherhood before, but instantly when I met my soon-to-be daughter we had a connection. I love children (probably because I'm just a big kid on the inside), but this was different. It was special!
Some of you have watched the video of my post-match interview (https://iawrestle.com/2017/04/30/kyven-gadson-emotional-after-picking-up-u-s-open-championship/) after the US Open Championship on Saturday, April 29. I've done a few interviews and have also won a few big tournaments. But this was different. It was special!
Winning the national title meant more to me because now, the reality is I am spending time away from Haley and Isabella. It hit me that while I’m away chasing down and catching my aspirations, my daughter doesn't see me. It not only takes a toll on me but also on her and our family. We are all making sacrifices; and it’s painful. I'm very blessed to have a supportive wife that wants to see me thrive in all areas of my life and allows me to pursue my dreams! I'm excited to return the favor to her when she gets into med school and becomes Dr. Gadson!
Isabella knows that I wrestle and now she wants to wrestle! I'm happy she will have a role model like Helen Maroulis to look up to as the first-ever USA Women's Freestyle Olympic Gold medalist. I'm not sure if she will end up wrestling, playing soccer, or becoming an art teacher (she loves drawing), but whatever she does, as her Father, I will support her. I will teach her that the key to attaining anything in life is discipline, dedication, and a true passion and love for it -- just like I have for wrestling and fatherhood!
I remember an article I read about my Dad. In it he said, "I would rather be a great father than a great coach!" Thank you Dad for being both!
Likewise, I would rather be a Great Father and Husband than an Olympic Champ! I am striving to do both, and even if I don't become an Olympic Champion I know that I will give my absolute best to my Family!
Faith, Family, and Freestyle!
God Is Great!