This week I was positive my column would be another Elvis column. I thought that because I was attending the SFC fights in Tupelo to cheer on Elvis cousin Dakota “The Dream” Smith. I thought I’d share my new Elvis experience of meeting Billy and Jo Smith with you all, but as I sat in my ringside seat I found myself looking around the crowd, more than watching the fights.

I found myself watching parents. It amazes me that no matter what sport a child chooses you can always spot “proud parents”. They’re always there. No matter the pride of the coaches, trainers and fans, you can always spot the proud mommas and daddies.

Proud parents are never hard to find. They’re the ones closest to where their child is. They’re the ones who’re literally watching their heartbeat do what they love. It was amazing to me watching Dakota’s mom and dad cheer Dakota on. Simply because as a martial arts family I’ve seen the preparation required for that particular sport, first hand.

I pray my babies know their daddy and I are their biggest cheerleaders.

No matter what they choose to do we will be there cheering them on!!!! Because when they are out there leaving it all on the mat, field or arena, we’re the ones sitting in the sidelines or in the stands praying for their safety and knowing win or loose we will be there to celebrate with them, or wipe their tears. Whether they are the best or the worst athlete we’re going to be proud of them for trying.

The love of a parent is amazing and I never realized what a treasure it is to have wonderful parents until I had children of my own. From the moment my children were born they each became a piece of my heart. Each one has their own aspirations. Therefore each one needs to be loved differently. My mother always said, “I love you all the same but I have to love you all, differently.” I never understood this until I became a mother of two, and so on. Each child is different, but no matter what we will always be those proud parents cheering from the sidelines!!!

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