Dear Kid,

Is Rio ready?

Rio Summer 2016 Olympics. DearKidLoveMom.comIn a word, um, no. Unless by “ready” you mean more of a hot mess than prior not-ready Olympic cities.

Claressa Shields, on the other hand, is ready.

Claressa is the first American woman to win Olympic Gold in boxing. Which means she can hit a lot harder than you can.

Let’s be clear. I’m not a fan of women boxing. Before you start yapping about sexism, let me say that I’m not a fan of men boxing. I get that it’s a sport. It’s just not a sport I like.

I am, however, a fan of Claressa.

As of this exact moment, Claressa is 21 years old. Did I mention she’s already won a gold medal? Are you feeling like a bit of an underachiever?

She grew up (can a 21 year old be all grown up? Don’t answer that) in Flint (home people who can’t drink water). Her father was a boxer in underground leagues (meaning he fought moles). He was released from jail when she was 9, and while he taught her about boxing, he wouldn’t let her participate in the sport (what with her being a girl).

Claressa’s grandmother encouraged her to do whatever she wanted regardless of gender and Fate joined in to hand Claressa an A #1 boxing coach.

And Claressa went on to become a crazy good boxer.

The world didn’t pay much attention.

Claressa won the World Championships in her weight class in 2014. The world continued to not pay much attention.

She has a record of 68-1. The world yawned.

She qualified for Rio. The world blinked and did a couple of interviews.

I plan to not watch boxing this year. But I will absolutely check to see how Claressa does. Both in the Olympics and in the City of Zika.

Things are gonna get interesting….

Love, Mom