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When my husband and I first became pregnant with our first child — our daughter — we couldn’t help but dream of all the amazing things she would accomplish in her life, and what things she might be interested in. We wanted her to be able to explore all types of hobbies and sports, and find what makes her feel the most alive.
When she was born, we quickly learned that this kiddo had energy for days. Even while she slept as a newborn, she was constantly moving. As soon as she could, she was crawling — and then running — far and fast. She was not a child who would sit on your lap, or really who would sit at all. She was (and still is) go, go, go!
This girl has always been our wild child, the one who would run away from wherever we were without a goal, other than for the sake of moving.
The one who I take to fenced-in parks to contain her while letting her get out her energy.
The one who acts more “like a boy” for her activity level and proclivity to injure herself than a lot of the little boys we know.
When you have a child who has boundless energy, sports are your best friend (outside of your real-life Mom friend besties, that is). We had our daughter enrolled in Mommy and Me gymnastics at 10 months, even though it was supposed to be for kids one year old and older.
We couldn’t wait — because it’s freaking adorable, she was already walking circles around us and climbing, and because I couldn’t wear her out enough at home!
Now our big girl is 3 (“and a half!”, she is quick to add), and she already has soccer and dance on her sporting repertoire. Soccer was not her thing. Dance, on the other hand, she is really enjoying — even ballet. And for a historically clumsy kiddo, she is actually quite graceful!
While trying out these other sports, our daughter stayed connected with gymnastics. She moved up to the independent class where the parents get to watch through the viewing window — a blogger mama’s dream come true. And most recently she advanced to the next level up based on skill!
To encourage and inspire my daughter, she and I have been watching videos of the gymnastics greats. Watching the strong young women compete has always held a special place in my heart. Their dedication, skill, poise, strength, power, and confidence make me proud as if I had anything to do with it!
I love sharing those videos with my daughter, and I especially love seeing the awe on her sweet face.
We watch some of my childhood favorites like Dominique Moceanu, Nastia Liukin, Kerri Strug, and Dominique Dawes.
And we watch some of our new favorites, especially Simone Biles, a four-time Olympic gold medalist.
Simone Biles is someone my daughter looks up to for her tenacity and strength of character as well as her ridiculous gymnastics skill (did you see her recent Triple Double at the 2019 US Gymnastics Championships?! — that means Simone nailed a double backflip in a tucked position, twisting THREE times).
Simone is one strong lady while competing in gymnastics, as well as outside of the gym in her personal life.
If you don’t know Simone’s story, here is a quick overview: Simone has overcome a lot of ACES (Adverse Childhood Experiences) to be where she is today. Both of Simone’s parents struggled with their own demons, which meant that Simone and her three siblings found themselves in the Foster Care system. Simone’s maternal Grandfather and his wife ultimately adopted Simone and one of her siblings, and the her two other siblings were adopted by other family. This life story at such a young age could have kept Simone from accomplishing all that she has. But Simone does not give up.
What an incredible woman for us all to look up to.
This month Simone is competing at the World Championships in Germany where she will attempt her Triple Double on the floor and her Double Double on the beam. You better believe that we will be tuning in!!
Simone Biles makes the impossible look easy, with her trademark confidence and poise. You don’t have to be a World Champion to live more confidently, too. As Candid’s brand ambassador, Simone is a role model for anyone seeking to be their best self.
Outside of gymnastics, Simone has partnered with Candid, the best teeth straightening company, where you order invisible teeth aligning trays online to use at home! You may remember that I am currently using Candid to straighten my teeth! (Click here to see my first review of Candid) P.S. I’m almost done! One set of trays left for this grinning mama!
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Christina is the writer behind the blog Real Life Mama. She is a mom two littles, a 4-year-old daughter and a 3-year-old son. Christina and her family live in San Diego, where she is a full-time mama, part-time mental health therapist (LPCC), and round-the-clock blogger, writer, and author. If she ever gets a moment to herself, she can be found singing at the top of her lungs, cooking, and crafting. Thanks for reading!