The Pep Club on the other hand ... was just a tad bit less cool. We sat on the first two rows of bleachers - behind the cheerleaders. We had matching t-shirts. We only cheered at home games. And there were no try-outs. But ... we knew all the cheers. We were loud foot stompers and exuberant clappers. And we were equally excited about the game ... if we weren't busy chatting or whispering about a cute guy.
That was where I found myself. The Pep Club. Twenty-odd years later, I think I've come to terms with not being a cheerleader. I guess I saved up much of my "Go Team!" enthusiasm for these mothering years, instead!
I am my kids' greatest cheerleader when it comes to:
- Losing teeth.
- Passing spelling tests.
- Ringing the bell at gymnastics.
- Sparkling report cards.
- Chores done well.
- Learning their multiplication tables.
- Putting away toys.
- Creating a new Lego ship.
- Hanging their coat completely on the hook.
- Coloring within the lines.
- Serving a sibling.
But that's not all. I also find myself cheering for my kids even when their actions don't necessarily seem cheer-worthy. And that's just because I'm Mom.
- Making it through gymnastics and being focused 80% time.
- Successfully putting 50% of their shoes in the shoe bin.
- Getting 75% of their math problems right.
- Not yelling at their baby sister when she's a pest (which is 83% of the time).
- Actually staying in their rooms for entire quiet time without checking in with me every 10 minutes.
- Staying focused on their homework 78% of the time.
- Getting to van with their shoes and coats ... not on their bodies, but they have them.
- Getting me their notes from their teachers. In my hand, not on the floor.
- Only grumbling through 25% of their chore to take out the trash.
- Brushing 83% of their teeth.
Those are the harder times to cheer for my kids ... but then I am reminded that this time here in our home is their practice. Practicing for life. Practicing for more responsibility. Practicing to be independent. And practice makes ... well, not perfect, exactly. No one needs that pressure ... least of all me!
So, let's rephrase that: Practice makes ... better.
And ... in my case, a better mom.
Here's to practicing and cheering and practicing some more ... Go Team!
Here are a few snapshots from this past week. The big kids had Super Bowl Spirit Day last Thursday at school. We turned up empty-handed when we started looking for NFL jerseys (we had several Rockies and Avalanche shirts, though). Fortunately, Cousin Caleb had what we needed. And who knew that he would actually have shirts for the two players in the big game? Not me! Thanks, Bubba!
Lydia, on the other hand, looked adorable in her Bronco's cheerleading outfit. Perhaps not the right team ... but she's so cute, it really doesn't matter!
Ashley wasn't really in the Super Bowl mood this weekend. She was more in the "hold me and let the world revolve around delicate little me" mood. So, we were thrilled that she still had fun during the big game. Girly fun. She spent most of the time giggling with Cousin Mal, taking care of a dozen or so babies and stuffing her face with Chex Mix. Whatever works for ya!