Mikaela Shiffrin is sharing her gratitude for boyfriend Aleksander Kilde amid the Winter Olympics.
On Wednesday, she re-shared a heartwarming message that he posted on Instagram after she skied out of her second straight race at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics on Tuesday.
Kilde, who's also an Olympic skier, shared a photo of Shiffrin sitting in the snow for several minutes after her devastating loss and explained why that image is more powerful than people may think.
"When you look at this picture you can make up so many statements, meanings and thoughts," he wrote. "Most of you probably look at it saying: 'she has lost it', 'she can’t handle the pressure' or 'what happened?'… Which makes me frustrated, because all I see is a top athlete doing what a top athlete does!"
"It’s a part of the game and it happens," Kilde continued. "The pressure we all put on individuals in the sports are enormous, so let’s give the same amount of support back.. It’s all about the balance and we are just normal human beings!! I love you Kaela."
Shiffrin later shared Kilde's post on Twitter with the caption, "My hope for every human is that they find another human who finds a way to love, understand, and heal them in the way @AleksanderKilde has done and continues to for me."
Kilde wasn't the only one who publicly supported Shiffrin. Retired skiing legend Lindsey Vonn and Olympic gymnast Simone Biles also sympathized with the Colorado native.
“I definitely think there’s a lot of emotions, and she’s obviously really upset, as she should be,” Vonn said on TODAY on Wednesday morning. “If I were her, I wouldn’t make any rash decisions. I think she just needs to take a minute and really think and take a deep breath and be around her mother and her boyfriend, her teammates, and just feel the support of everyone and not think the worst."
Biles — who withdrew from a several events at the Tokyo Olympics herself — shared three white-heart emojis dedicated to Shiffrin on Twitter.
Since Shiffrin fell just seconds into the race, she failed to qualify for the women’s slalom final, thus taking away the chance of her winning the event in consecutive Olympics. The skier still has three more events in Beijing. Her next race is the women’s super-G.
In a previous interview with NBC Nightly News anchor Lester Holt, Shiffrin talked about the pressure she feels going into the Olympics.
“You’re expected to win and you’re expected to be sort of invincible,” she said in an early February interview. “That’s when the armor cracks, so I’m just going in and like well, I’m just going to take off the armor now because it’s not going to do me any good.”