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What I learned walking into a gymnastics facility

What I learned walking into a gymnastics facility.

If you have had the chance to walk into a gymnastics facility and be there for a bit, you might have heard things like,

“You got this” “You can do it” “Let’s Go” “Get back up” “Brush it off” “Go get it” “We are cheering you on”

These words are shouted by coaches, other gymnasts, parents, and owners. These encouraging words are words to get the gymnast to keep going and not quit.  Can you imagine what it would look like if more people encouraged others to keep going and not quit!

I remember the first day I walked into the gym with my 6-year-old daughter.

We were so worried that she would get hurt doing all the tumbling she kept doing outside, that we wanted her to get trained properly.  I remember walking in the building and kind of wanting to cough to clear my throat from the chalk that was in the air. It smelled like athletes working hard. The noise was loud with what I explained above being chanted.  I looked around at all the different pieces of equipment and different levels of the gymnast. My daughter was a little reserved as she was observing others.

I still remember thinking, “Oh goodness, wait until they watch Nickale and her talent”.  I knew she had something about her that was unique. I was the mom that couldn’t wait until she was at the next level, and then the next level after that.  I didn’t realize I just needed to enjoy the moment because before I knew it, it would all be over.

As time went on, the hours and dedication increased. Things got intense. The practice took hours and hours. Skills were being learned. Injuries would happen here and there. Driving exactly 25 minutes each way if no traffic with 4 kids became our life. I didn’t even think twice about having 2 babies and a 5-year-old at the gym each day for 4 hours at a time. It was our routine and we made do. We made incredible friendships. Lasting memories. I knew Nickale wanted to go to the Olympics, and I would do everything I could to make it happen. Isn’t that what we do as parents?

What I learned walking into a gymnastics facility? So many lessons that I didn’t know I would learn at the time. Let me list a few…

  • Hard work either pays off or really does a number on you.
  • Gymnastic takes a toll on your body
  • Coaches are very stern at a high level of competition
  • Coaches will push you harder than you may think you want to be pushed
  • Coaches are doing what they generally feel is best for the athlete if they are a good coach
  • Not everyone is going to make the Olympics and that you are still amazing and talented
  • More people need to cheer each other on and encourage you not to quit
  • Listen to your kids when they say something is wrong
  • Listen to your kids when they have so much pain that it hurts to do the smallest thing
  • Don’t live your life through your kids
  • Don’t critique your kids. That is a coach’s role. Your role is to love them and encourage them NO MATTER WHAT

I never thought Nickale would have a daughter that would do gymnastics

I don’t know why I couldn’t picture it, but I couldn’t.  Now it’s her reality, she is the mom that is watching her daughter do gymnastics, have days that it is hard, Days that do not go as planned. Days that she wants to quit, and days that she loves it. Nickale coaches as well at the same gym because she really is amazing at what she does.

Now she will experience the feelings and emotions of wanting the best for her daughter. Feeling the sadness when that first rip happens on her hand. When that fall off the beam is a little scarier than the last fall. All of the emotions of being the mom taking her daughter to the gym.

Nickale is the one now cheering others on, telling them they can do it. Asking them questions to make sure they are ok.  Did she learn these skills because she was a gymnast and knows how it feels? Or did she learn these skills because others taught her how to go the extra mile for others? Or did she learn these skills because she learned that no one is our competition? We are all unique in our own way and cheering others on is how we become better people.  It is really interesting that when we go through situations, we can throw a fit and be negative with it or turn it into a positive situation and make the best out of it.

I am looking forward to continuing to watch all the things Nickale has learned, and to help so many other people. That is what life should be about. Take what we have learned and help others. Listen a little more. Care for others a little more. Enjoy the moments a little more. Don’t wish for the next level to happen, enjoy the level you are on and have the next level as your goal.

I can brag for a minute…

There is nothing like having your daughter get her cast off from a broken wrist on Tuesday, get cleared to tumble on Thursday, and walk into a state meet on a Friday and WIN IT!!!!  Things might have been a little harder at times for Nickale, but she didn’t quit!  She pushed through the good, the bad, and the hard.  The skills she learned are being used today.

Now she gets to enjoy these moments and smiles. Cheering others on.

This is your reminder from Powerful Kind Women to continue cheering others on. Through the good, the bad, and the hard!!!




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