“She’s going to be OK,” Shanon told DailyMail on Tuesday, July 27, at her home in Columbus, Ohio. Simone, 24, was adopted by her maternal grandparents at a young age after she and her three siblings were placed in foster care as their mom struggled with drug addiction.
Simone withdrew from the women’s team gymnastic final in Tokyo to protect her “body and mind.” This left the remaining members of Team USA — Jordan Chiles, Sunisa Lee and Grace McCallum — to compete without her. The ladies proudly took home a silver medal while the Russia Olympic Committee won the gold.
“Whenever you get in a high stress situation, you kind of freak out,” the Courage to Soar author told reporters about her decision. “I have to focus on my mental health and not jeopardize my health and well-being … It just sucks when you’re fighting with your own head.”
The Simone vs. Herself star later gushed over her team via Instagram. “I’m SO proud of these girls right here,” she wrote. “You girls are incredibly brave and talented! I’ll forever be inspired by your determination to not give up and to fight through adversity! They stepped up when I couldn’t. thanks for being there for me and having my back! forever love y’all.”
The Texan is the most-decorated gymnast in history and has won 31 Olympic and World Championship medals. During the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro, Simone was awarded a gold in the categories team, all-around, vault and floor exercise. She also took home a bronze for balance beam.
The gymnast is not only an advocate for mental health, but she is an amazing role model to young girls and speaks frequently about being proud of your own success.
“It’s important to teach our female youth that it’s OK to say, ‘Yes, I am good at this,’ and you don’t hold back,” the Dancing With the Stars winner previously told USA Today. “You only see the men doing it. And they’re praised for it, And the women are looked down upon for it. But I feel like it’s good [to do] because once you realize you’re confident and good at it, then you’re even better at what you do.”
“It’s not out of cockiness. I’ve won five World titles,” she continued. “If I say, ‘I’m the best gymnast there is,’ [the reaction is] ‘Oh, she’s cocky. Look at her now.’ No, the facts are literally on paper.”
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