Life of a Step Mom: Sports and your Support.

Early mornings to out of town meets. When I became a Step Mom my life expanded a little into the sports world with my newly gained daughter Uni. Prior to becoming her Step Mom I had already started to share the gymnastics practices on Saturdays with my husband when she was went us. Part of this was so that we could add another layer to our bond separately from her dad and I.The early wake up to the hour drive to the gym to the four hours of practice and the hour back home. I even went with my Husband to a couple of out of town meets. I am always proud of her routines.

I remember the first meet she was with us and I totally bombed on the “slick bun“. I had did the hairstyle before for practice courtesy of You Tube; and slammed dunked it; but this time around she had came to the house with her hair professionally flat ironed and she didn’t want to wet it. I remember as we were in the bathroom prior to leaving trying to readjust and stick bobby pins in that something just wasn’t right.

I told my husband ” I am totally going to get the disappointed stare from the moms” .

We arrived and Uni’s mom was parked a couple of vehicles over and I immediately told her to go see if her mom can savage the style. I figured since she had Uni hair flat ironed there was a specific way she knew how to style it and in my head I thought this could be done in minutes. Let’s just say our Uni hair was flopping all over the place. Her mom and other moms offered assistance and I sat a row behind with my husband staying in the fiance place; with whispers to my husband of ” yep its official I suck at this“. My husband as always reassured me with positive words and a smile. Before her first big meet I went on google and looked up the etiquette of gymnastic parents. Yes, there is actually articles on what to do and not do during gymnastic meets. I was sure if the way you support at a basketball, football or even track meet was the same as a gymnastic meet. They are not. I am glad I researched.

Each practice I attended I got more comfortable. It wasn’t the weird feeling of being the “fiancee” in a room full of moms talking about their husbands and kids that i started out with. Not the friendliest environment; but neither was me keeping to my self I suppose. I remember telling my husband ” no one engages with me” and he replied ” well did you speak to them? ” Point well received I replied. So I started to ask questions and go out to the floor when practice ran over or if Uni was getting some extra pointers.

Uni starting her floor routine

One incident Uni was getting some pointers and I came out to the floor to record, she landed some awesome moves and her coach excited said “ we should get mom out here more often” . Uni and I both just stared awkwardly and he had moved on to another instruction.

Uni at practice

My husband told me later that day that he probably wasn’t paying attention or didn’t realize he said it. He also had to reassure with

” babe it’s ok, you guys will work through the awkward moments”.

He was right after more practices I was more confident in responding to new moms asking me ” is that your daughter right there?” I went from feeling weird and uncomfortable to being open with

” she is my soon to be daughter” .

I have traded out my sleep ins and increased my cups of coffee. I have became an amateur gymnastic judge and have created many in the car games to keep the robotic phone trance at a minimal. I am learning .

This past meet Uni had; I couldn’t make it and her Dad went solo. Her Dad and I made a promise that at least one of the team will be at her events; just in case Dad falls really ill; unless we both are out of commission. We always want to make it a point to show through our presence our continual support of her endeavors. So as her step mom I am ready and willing to be a part of the support team that her dad and mom selflessly display. I am excited to be a part of my husband cheer-leading squad for our daughter. I no longer feel like maybe I am out of place. We are a family.

To all my Step Moms out there,

here’s to you selflessly joining the team of being the child number one supporter.

Get out there learn from all the mistakes, google your brain out and find other step moms to encourage each other. If you don’t have one at this very moment, you do now.

~Terra Howard
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