The Cheerleader

Siss Boom Bah, Rah Rah Rah!!!!

Cheerleaders. The mere mention of them often elicits a strong reaction in people. For some of us it conjures thoughts of crisp fall nights spent in the stands of the local football stadium as we watched our home team trample the visiting team. For others it brings back memories of the hierarchical agony that often comes with middle and high school. Still others think about the athleticism that is required of modern cheerleaders. It’s really a mixed bag of reactions. No matter how you may personally feel about cheerleaders, the truth is we all need at least one in our Tribe.

The job of a cheerleader is multi-faceted. They are expected to provide support to their home team and players. They rally the spectators in support of their team. They are called upon to provide encouragement to their team and the fans during tense moments of the game. And in the event of a loss, their job is to ensure the team and fans don’t lose heart or become too discouraged. They often start the process of cheering for the next game on the sidelines immediately following a loss. It’s a lot of work. Even without all the grooming, tanning, schoolwork, etc.

Just like a sports team benefits from having cheerleaders on the sidelines during games, we benefit from having a cheerleader on the sideline of our life. That way we know we always have someone in our corner, supporting and encouraging us. Even in our darkest hour, we’re just one small cheer away from turning the tide in our favor.

I am fortunate to have several cheerleaders in my Tribe. In truth, every member of my Tribe has functioned in this role at some point in our relationship. But for today, I’d like to focus on a recent episode in which I relied upon my Cheerleaders.

All my life I have wanted to write. I’m fairly certain my family got tired of my empty-threatened declaration of, “One day I’m going to put that in my book,” long ago. I have dabbled in the field of writing in the past, even spending a few years writing materials for the children’s ministries at a couple of the churches I have attended.

While I enjoyed that, I knew that I needed to find a different outlet for my desire. To do something more personal that would reach beyond just a few kids on a Sunday morning; something for a more mature audience. But for years, I allowed my fear of failure to keep me from even trying. After all, you can’t fail if you don’t try.

With much encouragement from my biggest cheerleader (my husband) in particular, I finally took my first step towards pursuing my dream when I started this blog a few months ago. I know there are thousands of these things on the internet, but it was still a huge step for me. One that I would never have taken were it not for the cheerleading efforts of Mr. Brown.

Since beginning this new journey, I have come to value the Cheerleaders in my Tribe more than ever. I use a couple of them as editors. A few of them are kind enough to share and retweet my posts. One even gives me a shout out or two from the pulpit every now and again. And still another has cheered me into accepting a new challenge. All with her by my side reminding me that I can do this – that I won’t completely suck at it. Possibly even more importantly, providing me with an opportunity to expand my horizons and tackle another fear.

The amazing thing about the Cheerleaders in my Tribe is that when the game is over, win or lose, they’re right there to celebrate with me, or to cheer me up and remind me that tomorrow is another day and that there’s always another game on the horizon. Always providing encouragement that I may very well be victorious the next time.

So here’s to the Cheerleaders out there:

Hippity Hop, Hippity Hop

Cheerleaders Rock

Hippity Hop, Hippity Hop

Let me see that bootie drop

Hippity Hop, Hippity Hop

Cheerleaders Rock

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