…And Let the Church Say "Amen"!

October 27, 2009

Helen Darling, WNBA star talks about faith, career and raising triplets!

Filed under: Christian Athletes — Kitina @ 11:18 pm
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Helen Darling Story

Saying Helen Darling is busy is an understatement. She is a mother of seven year old triplets, two boys Ja-Juan, Jalen and a girl Nevaeh, a published author of a children’s book “Hide ‘n Seek Mondays”, mentor and the before mentioned professional athlete. However, being a Christian is forefront in her life and she speaks exclusively to us to tell us how Helen handles it all.

Who were your role model(s) growing up and how did that influence your career choice?

Helen Darling: My mother has and always will be my role model. She didn’t really influence my career choice as for pushing me to something, she was just supportive in everything I did. It’s funny because my mom is not really a sports fan; she is a house wife and enjoys cooking and taking care of her family. So she never really came to many of my games, my father I don’t think missed a game. That never bothered me even when I made it into the WNBA because I knew she was proud of me no matter what. The one thing I loved about my mom was she never treated me like a super star when I came home I was Helen, her daughter, nothing else. However, she did give me the inspiration and idea’s to write my children’s book. Growing up we didn’t have much money, but we never new we were poor because my mom spoiled us with time. She showed us that doing things as a family was better than any store brought gift.

How do you manage motherhood and your career?

HD: Only by the grace of God. He blessed me with a wonderful support group…my family. Orlando the kid’s father has been my hero. If I could give him an award it would be “the best father in the world award.” He allowed me to continue to play basketball and pursue my dream of becoming and author. I never had to worry about my babies because he was always there. He actually did the potty training.
However, now that the kids are getting older it’s becoming more difficult to leave them because now they understand. But we write letters to each other, talk on the phone, use the webcam to see each other, of course none of these things can replace a warm embrace and wet kisses but it helps pass the time and keeps me connected with them.

Do you feel that it is difficult to be a Christian in the WNBA, have you had to sacrifice any of your values in your career and if so how?

HD: I don’t think it’s the career that makes it difficult to be a Christian as much as it is the individual. Everyone has their own struggle and temptations not matter what career they are in. I personally have not had to sacrifice my values in the 9 years in the WNBA. Everyone respects each others decisions. And we have a lot of believers here in the WNBA.

In your career do you have the opportunity to spread the message of Christ and how?

HD: I do more fellowship then actually spreading the word. Like I said we have a lot of believers not only on my team but in the WNBA as well.
The WNBA supports that as well by providing chaplains in every city we play.
Chapel is usually an hour before the game and we spend about 10-15 minutes learning about God. We sometime have praise and worship which I think is really cool. My team the San Antonio Silver Stars, we try to have bible study once a week just to support and pray for each other as we sometimes fall into hard times. We have an awesome time when we get together because we are all normal with everyday issues and the best part about it is we trust one another and we are non judgmental.

What do you plan to do once your WNBA career is over?

HD: I’m not quite sure yet. I would love to work in sports marketing. But I will probably enjoy time with my family and focus more on my writing career. I’m excited to see my children grow spiritually as they face the different issues of growing up.

Do you feel that illiteracy is still a problem with youth today and what should be done to increase interest in reading and writing among youth?

HD: I think we are doing a much better job of addressing the issue of illiteracy but we still have a long way to go. It’s very difficult to get young people to read with all the new technology. To them reading is boring and a waste of time, they can get the same information off the internet with less time and effort. I think if we can some how make reading fun and interactive we may be able to reach them. However, I believe it starts with the parents, we need to be an example, and take time to read yourself let your children see you read. Read as a family, start a book club for your family with incentives not only will you show them reading can be fun but it also create family bonding.

Helen Darling plays for the San Antonio Silver Stars and is a published author.
* Originally published in CHOSEN magazine

1 Comment »

  1. […] that Garner and Hoover are holding babies. I don’t know whether Helen Darling brought her triplets to town with her, but that would have been fun to see—they’re 7 years old now and would […]

    Pingback by Lady Lions’ Final Four Basketball Team Honored « — December 13, 2009 @ 10:07 pm | Reply

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