In an open space in the Institut Guttmann, in Badalona, improvise a wheelchair rugby court.
A group of players appears, and among them Pau Y Darius, and also Ricky Rubio.
The reader will recognize Ricky Rubio (28). It is a celebrity. He has led the Spanish team that has just won the World Cup in China. You have been declared MVP of the tournament and the final. It appears in the title quintet of the championship.
Ricky Rubio is at the top of his sport.
“The death of my mother changed my scale of values: losing a game was a minutia”
But it hasn't always been there.
Ricky Rubio stands in the center of the track, takes a seat in a wheelchair, hears the instructions of the specialists and claims the ball.
Now it is played. There are blockages, assists and even a pick and roll . Ricky Rubio signs an essay and asks for claps:
"I didn't think about quitting basketball, but I stopped enjoying it: I just wanted to disappear."
– Hey, what I have marked!
He is applauded with desire.
He is applauded for the essay, and also for many other merits. Behind the appointment at the Institut Guttmann are the Vamosde ColaCao scholarships and the Higher Sports Council.
Ricky Rubio has gone to reward Pau and Darío. Both had been elite athletes. Pau played handball. He was international with the U21. It was silver in a World Cup. Darío was a skier, several times champion of Catalonia. Both had two accidents a year ago. Pau, in the car. Darius, skiing. Both suffered irreversible injuries and remained in a wheelchair. Both found refuge in adapted rugby. Both play at the Barcelona Universitari Club. Both requested help to receive eight adapted chairs and won the scholarship.
“I meditate every day: I wake up ten minutes earlier than usual; there is no better time ”
Ricky Rubio has gone to deliver the chairs. Then, the star of the basketball stamps his signature on the shirts of dozens of kids. It is offered for selfies . He moves freely around the place, scrambled by his presence.
Then, Ricky Rubio attends to The vanguard .
You were very loose on that court …
Let's see if I learn even more. The truth is that he had done something at the Madrid Campus: he had the opportunity to play wheelchair basketball. Anyway, that something had practiced before. The good thing about this experience is that it puts you in perspective, puts you in its place.
Do you think that being an elite athlete makes things easier for you in any discipline?
If something has the elite athlete is the winning spirit, of overcoming. And it is important, because you need it. Elite sport helps you want to be better every day.
Ricky Rubio is not exceptionally tall. He has a kind smile and blushes when they introduce us. It is discovered as a humble, close and extraordinarily reflective star. In recent times he has taken a Zen stance, the result of a painful trauma, the death of his mother.
“After the rain, when the sun appears, you really appreciate it; life is difficult but I try to taste it ”
It was three years ago.
The matter has transcended in recent weeks. He himself has confessed. The death of his mother, a victim of lung cancer, led him to another dimension. Talk about it openly.
What happened when his mother died?
Buffff The scale of values broke down and then I had to rebuild.
I understood that losing a game became a minutia. I saw that, beyond the pain that a defeat can generate, there is room for much more pain. And that's why you have to modify your scale of values. For me a process was opened that could have destroyed me.
And what he did?
I decided to consider it as a challenge. But it is a challenge that takes its time and that, in reality, never ends. Life is not a written script.
How did it help?
I asked for help. Psychologists Books of people I admire.
I read the biography of James Rhodes, Instrumental. Do you know her?
James Rhodes is a reference pianist. Compose and interpret, and in Instrumental reveals his descent into hell: he had suffered sexual abuse when he was a child, victim of his physical education teacher. He attempted suicide on several occasions.
Did you consider stopping playing basketball?
Not quite. But I stopped enjoying basketball. Although that was my fault. Actually, what I wanted to do was disappear. Start from scratch, with anything else.
But that was impossible! You are a basketball player of the first magnitude!
I would have asked for a wild card. But there isn't in life. What I learned from that is that you have to enjoy everything. After the rain, when the sun appears, you really appreciate it. Life is difficult, but I try to taste it.
I do a lot.
Through an application. It is called Headspace.
How did you discover it?
I read a book on meditation by Headspace founder Andy Puddicombe. I was so fascinated that I entered that world.
Do you meditate daily?
Everyday. I wake up ten minutes earlier than usual and I do it. It is the best time of day to meditate.
And has your life changed?
I think so. For example, I have multiplied my sense of humor. But most of its benefits I apply to myself.
Do you recommend it to everyone? Would we make a better world?
If it works for me, I think it could work for everyone. But beware, we are not all the same.
In the last hours it has been known that Ricky Rubio and his partner, Sara Colomé, will be first-time parents in January. Ricky Rubio prefers to keep the matter in strict privacy. At no time during the conversation do we discuss the matter.