Talia Edmonds | Spartans All-Access | Michigan State Volleyball

(relaxing music) – My family is actually Samoan,
which is a smaller island, smaller Polynesian island,
but they all moved to Hawaii. My grandma and my grandpa moved there. My mom is one of 14, so
she has a lot of siblings. Growing up we used to go visit
them and stuff all the time. – The culture has become
part of our kids’ upbringing. It’s a very rich culture, it’s a culture that has warm hospitality, it has the culture where
family is very important, it’s a close-knit family. There is lots of reverence
and respect for one another. We love to get together
and have large gatherings and we sit around in fellowship. We sing praises, have prayer, and we eat, we really enjoy that and it was good for them to experience it. (calm music) – Culture there is really really big. I mean like, one thing that
they always preach is family, so I’m the type to text my mom everyday, call my mom, call my dad, I’m always in touch with my brother, so family’s what keeps me going. Growing up we used to go visit
them and stuff all the time, but the reason my mom moved to Michigan is because my dad was stationed in the army. – It was a culture shock
because being from Hawaii, you know it’s really laid back and it’s just like a whole different state. Talia was born in Lancing. Interesting enough, my husband was in the State Trooper Academy, and it was just nice that
she was able to full-circle and kind of come back
here to Michigan State. (someone blows a whistle) (announcer speaks distantly) (audience cheers) With Talia, when she was probably around five or six years old, I was participating in
a beach (mumbles) beach to volleyball tournament, and she would just pick up the ball, and come over to where I was, and so, I would, you know, take that opportunity to just kind of demonstrate
some of the skills to her, so I positioned her
hands, like a platform, and then I would toss the ball and have her repeat it. – She’s always been in
my corner, you know, helping me out, coaching me
ever since I was younger, she was actually my middle
school volleyball coach in 7th and 8th grade, and then she followed me to high school and was the freshman volleyball coach. She was there, talking to me, helping me like with
the ropes and my skills, and then just also, she knew what it took to become a college volleyball player, and so she was always in
my corner rallying for me, helping me out even on my bad days. – I’m very proud of Talia, she’s a very hard worker, I think she’s a great leader as well. She likes to take charge, she leads by example, she’s very encouraging to her teammates. She is very mentally
tough, she’s resilient. Talia is always mindful of her teammates and she’s always trying
to look outside of herself to help her team. – Hello, hi. Talia. (Peka laughs) We went down there for I think nine days, and that’s a little bit shorter
than what we usually go for, but went to see my family,
my grandma still lives there, and a lot of my mom’s siblings. I love seeing my grandma, she’s 89 now, and so she’s been going strong, she loves going to exercise class, (laughs) and all this stuff but, I don’t know I love to go see her because it’s just so different, just comparing my, it’s like
two different worlds basically, so they all speak Samoan
there, my mom is bilingual, so they all, even like my
first cousins they all know, and they can understand the language. Being immersed in a
whole different culture while I was there, and
while whenever I’m there, it’s just I love being in it
because it’s just so different for me, and it’s something that I’m really really
proud to be a part of. – I think the biggest
thing that I’d like Talia to take away from her experiences, especially with the culture
is just the discipline, the love for others, being kind to others, and also that she will
continue to have and grow with her volleyball sisterhood. I think it’s just an amazing experience, and also that it’s lifelong, and I really believe that, I think if she can continue that, she’ll always be successful in life. The giving of a lei is a very,
it symbolizes greeting, love. You get a lei when you
get off the airplane, you’re greeted with the lei, when you say goodbye, so
that’s very heartfelt. – For my mom it’s really hard, like ’cause her mom’s getting older and we don’t get to go back as much, so every chance that we get to go there and we get to see her, and we get to see our family,
it’s just a great opportunity that we take full advantage of. (Talia’s grandma speaks
in foreign language) Before we leave every time
she brings us downstairs and she’s like “‘kay
we have to say a prayer “before you guys go.” Her, my mom have this
very like heartfelt moment because my mom doesn’t know the next time we’ll be able to get back to see her. – You wanna give me? – Yeah, okay. – The moment where she puts
the lei on and I’m just like, wow, I’m just, I love
being here and I love her. – [Peka] There you go, there (murmurs). – These are the moments that
really really matter, you know. Sometimes you can lose sight of that, like within, especially
being a college athlete, sometimes you can lose sight
of the important things which is, to me, my family, and the moments I get to spend with them. (Peka speaks in foreign language) (Talia’s grandma speaks
in foreign language) – I love you too grandma. – I miss you. – I miss you too. (upbeat intense music)

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