On Being a Cheer Mom

As I get ready to travel with my daughters to a national cheer competition this weekend, having binged Cheer on Netflix this past weekend while packing the glitter cannon, the reality of who I have become is clear. I can say loud, and a little [a lot] bit proud: I AM A CHEER MOM.

Don’t mix me up with a dance mom, a soccer mom, or a gymnastics mom. Those moms have their own club to which I do not have access. We cheer moms have unique characteristics that make us easily identifiable in a lineup…I meant crowd.

So how do you know a cheer mom? Let me give the basic call signs of our Sparkle Tribe:

  • We talk about cheer even to people who simply don’t give a poop. I hope this has changed now because you all are going nuts over Cheer on Netflix. Listen to us. This shite is glittery gold. There are athletes like Jerry and Gabi and Lexi and Morgan galore in this sport.
  • We do everything like it is timed to an 8-count track. Washing a dish? 8-counts. Putting a child to bed? Five 8-counts. Running a meeting at work? Endless 8-counts. You talking to us? Better make it cheer good if you want a decent number of 8-counts assigned to the conversation.
  • We live in our car. To make it to all practices, open gyms, tumbling clinics, team bonding sessions, camps, and competitions, we are in our cars endlessly. In fact, we sold our houses and live in our cars to pay for cheer. Just kidding on the selling of houses…
  • We have glitter everywhere. There is glitter in our homes, our cars, our hair, our nose, and probably in our bits. It comes from uniforms, bows, cheer bags, bottles of glitter we glue gun to stuff, and from the blood and sweat of our athletes.
  • We belong, willing or not, to a cheer family. It is loud. It is crazy. It is a loud and crazy dysfunctional family that can simultaneously make you feel extreme love and irritation. We talk about each other. We hug it out. We get mad at each other. We hug it out. We win. We hug it out. We lose. We hug it out. WE STICK TOGETHER.
  • We use semi-trucks to take our Glitter & Gear (G&G) between competitions and practices (in our dreams at least). We then carry the G&G around massive competition facilities, to and from hotels, and to and from modes of transportations like we are Beyonce’s entourage. Even when our athletes go all diva on us, we still carry their G&G because they are nervous, sore, and tired. Also, we spent a million dollars on that G&G. No G&G gets left behind.
  • We are as fierce as our athletes. You don’t mess with either. Don’t let the sparkle and bows fool you.
  • We are participating in a sport. Our sons and daughters are athletes. We are their support system. We will clarify this a bazillion times until you repeat the same. And we study the stats and other teams like there are Las Vegas odds on this.

So, do you get it? Nope, neither do I some days. My girls chose this life for me and our family. Even their reluctant teenage brother will schlep their stuff and put on Wildcats gear. He will stand by the stage and scream for his sisters and their teams, having seen this season’s competition routines one thousand times, yet he still pretends it is all new and amazing.

This makes us all sound crazy, especially me as the mom who lets this be a reality for her family. Again, my girls chose this. I then chose to support them financially, emotionally, and spiritually. I also support their team and the gym as needed. As a result, I grew my world and my family. I get to watch my daughters and their teammates perform amazing physical feats on the mat while they grow as leaders and people. I get to watch them win and lose with grace because that’s the golden rule of cheerleading.

While Cheer on Netflix correctly pointed out there is no career waiting once these athletes max out on age, there is something even better. There is a life waiting for them for which they have all the ingredients and attributes for success.

You may be wondering where our cheer dad (The Dave) is in this. He gets to make his own post at The Rogers 5 in the future on this topic because his role is just as important as mine.AKD_6381


23 thoughts on “On Being a Cheer Mom

  1. LOVE this! It is all true. Hugging it out brought a tear to my eye because we ARE a dysfunctional family. And our athletes give their ALL! Our support and bag schlepping is the least we can do 🧡🖤

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I tell people when they ask where is cheer going to get your daughter, I say it’s getting her happiness And ability to choose a passion of something she loves and that’s what life should all be about! But I then say about they are athletes, they learn about being on a team , which that alone helps you in life! And so on…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I am so sad my daughter’s all star days are behind her. Thankfully I have 4 more years to a cheer mom. She is a college cheerleader now. Off to UCA College Nationals this weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The G&G, the stinky cheer shoes…the after Comp smiles or tears (and Lord knows sometimes the Dippin’ Dots)-and my kid is 17😂😂. But, no matter what, this time-these memories-the coaches, friends, new skills, conquered fears… it will go through her life with her, as you said!! Great read. And I totally agree… the show spotlights some great athletes, and we all know in each team our kids have been on-we could make a Netflix series of some of these kids with the same heart, and some of the coaches that put their everything (and more) into their teams. I am so happy the cheer world finally is getting some light shed on it for others to “get it” that aren’t a part of the sport. And I say that in a nice way. These kids work soooo hard!!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. There is a lot to cheerleading. Team work and trusting that they will be there when you flip high up in the air. It help them to be who they want to be. They aren’t any relations to me, but when I see them perform, I’m so proud of them.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Love this article. I felt every glittery moment of it. I wouldn’t change a thing either. Our cheer families are some of my best friends and I am so thankful to have met other crazy moms like me.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I shared this with my daughter who is not only a cheer mom, but the team cheer mom. She then shared it with the rest of the team cheer moms. What a spot on piece! Proud grandma of a flyer.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Sheryl! I love hearing from cheer grandmas, too. You are so important to the success of your athletes. Wish the team and your flyer a successful and healthy season from me!


  8. I know a little how you feel. The wife is at work today and I am off to get ready to drive to a cheer competition in Indy this weekend. Long love the cheer parents!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Being the team mom, I am not only my daughter’s biggest cheerleader, I also am cheerleader to 14 other girls and boy. People think I am crazy for the number of cowbells I own. She chose this sport, begged me to do it. I support her on both her all-star team and school team. I wouldn’t have it any other way. As we pack for our competition this weekend, I will have more nerves then she does and cheer 10X louder than she does….Her and her team will know that I am there to be their biggest cheerleader! 5, 6, 7, 8 It’s Electric!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Mom to a varsity and competition cheerleader here. We’re getting ready for UCA Nationals for her school team, and a whole slew of comps for her All-Star team. It’s crazy expensive, exhausting, and I don’t even want to think about how many miles I’ve put on our car. Wouldn’t trade a moment of it for anything.

    I run the Facebook page for my daughter’s varsity team, and shared this there so that her fellow students and teachers who aren’t in cheer maybe understand a little more why we’re all so nuts about this sport. Thanks for a beautiful piece of writing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Melissa. You are welcome! Good luck at UCA & All-Star comps. My youngest daughter just took home a jacket from Super Nationals. My other daughter’s team had a remarkable day 2 and made it to the middle of the pack in J3 International. It is exhausting as we get ready to drive home. Nothing easy seems worth it though. Thank you for sharing! I hope it helps.


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