Canadian curler Kristie Moore is competing, gestating in Vancouver.
Things we expected to see at the Vancouver Olympics: Shaun White winning a gold medal with a massive halfpipe run, bobsledders careening down the track at insane speeds, hilariously insane figure skating costumes, Scott Hamilton losing all perspective. Things we did not expect to see: Pregnant ladies competing. Yes, Alberta's Kristie Moore, the alternate on the Canadian women's curling team, is expecting her first child in May, and brought her five-and-half-month bump into the rink this week.
Moore, who's 30, failed to qualify for the Olympics at Canada's curling trials last fall with her primary team, so she and her boyfriend, Shane Wray, decided to start a family. Then, in November, the Olympic squad's leader (called a skip in curling), Cheryl Bernard, called Moore to invite her to Vancouver.
"They thought it was no big deal," Moore told the Edmonton Journal. "I can throw with it, I can sweep with it. I'm still going to my personal trainer and all that stuff. I'm probably in better shape pregnant than I was before." Moore says that right now, her pregnancy isn't interfering with the competition. Since curling requires a great deal of balance, "[In] the eighth month or so, that might be an issue," she said.
The Chinese women's curling team is the favorite in Vancouver, but so far Bernard's team has prevailed over the Swiss and the Japanese. Today they face the Germans. This isn't the first time a female athlete has competed at the Olympics while pregnant. In 2006, German skeleton racer Diana Sartor placed fourth while about nine weeks pregnant, and at the 1920 Games in Antwerp, Swedish figure skater Magda Julin-Mauroy won a gold medal during her first trimester—and we suspect that both Candace Parker and Kerri Walsh conceived their babies (born in spring 2009) while celebrating their gold medals at the Beijing Games. What Do Pro Athletes Know About Marriage?
And of course there have been a number of couples who've either met at the Olympics or competed at the same Games. American pairs figure skaters Amanda Evora and Jeremy Barrett are on different teams (she placed tenth with her partner, Mark Ladwig, and he came in thirteenth with partner Caydee Denney on Monday), but live together in Florida, and the gold medalists in pairs, Chinese skaters Shen Xue and Zhao Hongbo, fell in love after years of competing together. Tennis player Roger Federer met his wife, Mirka, in the Sydney Olympic village while both were competing, and lugers Bengt and Ashley Walden married in 2006. And 1992 figure-skating gold medalist Kristi Yamaguchi met her husband, hockey player Bret Hedican, when both were representing the U.S. at the Albertville Games. The high-pressure atmosphere of the Olympics can test relationships, but it can also make for some adorably sweet stories. Matching jewelry doesn't hurt, either.
Photo courtesy of Yahoo Sports.