Olympic figure skater Scott Hamilton is battling a brain tumor for the third time in 12 years, but he’s using the power of prayer and a significant skating technique to help him overcome the latest knot in his string of life-threatening ailments.
“I have a unique hobby of collecting life-threatening illness,” Hamilton, who overcame testicular cancer in 1997 and batted previous brain tumors in 2004 and 2010, told People magazine.
Hamilton learned of the most recent tumor at a routine check-up and said the “first thing” his wife, Tracie, did when he told her was grab both of his hands and start to pray.
“And it was powerful,” he said of his wife’s prayer. “I mean, it changed everything for me.”
— Scott Hamilton (@ScottHamilton84) October 21, 2016
Hamilton said he chooses to “celebrate life” in everything he does, relying on hope and his Christian faith to get him through.
“I’ve been blessed beyond my wildest imagination,” he said.
The father to four children – biological sons Aidan, 13, and Maxx, 8, and two children he adopted from Haiti in 2014: 15-year-old Jean Paul and 13-year-old Evelyne – decided to not panic in front of them in order to “set the tone,” simply telling Aidan, “Here we go again.”
Hamilton was born with a brain tumor but was not symptomatic until after his competitive skating years were over.
Six years after he overcame his first tumor, a pituitary brain tumor, Hamilton was diagnosed again. Six years after getting surgery to remove the second one, a third brain tumor has surfaced.
When he was diagnosed in 2010, Hamilton said he told Tracie, “God doesn’t owe me a day. I’m good. Whatever’s next is next.”
“The blessings keep coming because we allow them as we ask for them,” he said.
Even after his skating years, Hamilton credits an important mentality for the sport in helping him stay mentally strong in the battle for his health.
“The first thing I teach skaters at my skating academy is how to get up, because we’re gonna fall,” he said. “It’s how you get up, because the more times you get up, the stronger you are to face the next thing, which will happen, because that’s life.”
Hamilton said he chooses to “celebrate life” in everything he does.
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