Tyler Wright Breaks Down Her Year+ Disappearance From Pro Surfing
"The state of which my mind is coming to, I can't keep going."
In the middle of the 2018 Championship Tour season, and on the back of consecutive World Titles, Tyler Wright pulled out of the Corona Pro J-Bay on account of contracting Influenza A in Africa.
She would not compete again for over a year.
Speculations around Tyler's condition were cast far and wide across the surfing world, but few actually knew what was happening in the mind and body the 2x World Champ.
One of those few was Alexandra Lynn, stage name Alex the Astronaut, Tyler's then-girlfriend and caregiver. In a touching Instagram post, Tyler had this to say about their now-expired relationship:
Alex is the only person that saw it all. Even though Alex and I have gone our separate, individual healing ways now, my gratitude and respect for this incredible, compassionate, smart, kind and emotionally intelligent women is unparalleled. For a little over a year, we had no answers or end in sight and the not knowing was rough. Alex, while working full time on her own chaotic career as a musician (touring the world, writing and recording an album - "the theory of absolutely nothing” @alex.the.astronaut ), as well as normal life demands, also took on 24hr physical and emotional care of me.
It may shock you that I was not an easy patient. I pride myself as being an independent woman, and learning to accept help was a challenge (turns out you can be or do both). I also had some questionable athlete, 'push through pain' mentalities that took their toll - and then I also had to deal with the impact that it had on Alex. Alex stood by me while post viral broke me to my core everyday, first mentally then physically. The physical was never what broke me and caused me to stop - it was always mental. Through every break down (sometimes 6 a day) and every break through Alex was there.
Alex, is a true Queen, with strength and courage complemented by a beautiful grace that she took everything that happened and was able to navigate with love and kindness....Without Alex’s love and support I would not be where I am today - I am truly blessed and humbled to have had Alex by my side. A Special thank you to Alex’s parents, extended family and friends.
Above is a 60 Minutes episode that serves to explain Tyler's year-plus departure from competitive surfing. Including interviews with Tyler, her family, and neurologic specialists, the piece is insightful and at times heart-wrenching for the empathetic viewer.
We sincerely hope you'll watch.