A Show Mom’s Perspective

By: Telynda Hendrickson

May 2023

I often think about the chances that I have with my kids. We are always trying to win THE BIG ONE, when, realistically, we have a small number of chances to do so. I often wonder if we have spent too much time focused on winning and not enough on the journey that it took to get there — the one filled with successes, failures, and countless hours spent in the barn. As parents, we have this vision in our heads about how we can build the “perfect” show life for our kids — the life that many of us dreamed of having when we were young.

I write this because my kids are getting older. They are growing faster than I ever imagined, and I am left here wondering how their days in the show ring have passed by so quickly. I write this because I, too, need to remember to be present in each of these moments — win or lose — because at the end of the day, our time clock is running short. It is so easy to embrace and cherish the moments when our goals are met and when everyone is happy and celebrating, but I know we actually learn more from challenging times.

I guess what I’m challenging myself and other moms to do is embrace even the moments that are less than picture perfect — late nights cleaning pens, breaking the crazy one that just might end up being the best one in the barn, getting the gilt to eat one week before the show after coming into heat unexpectedly, wiping the tears off your sweet children’s faces when they have to load their favorite animal onto the truck, and so many more. These are just a few moments that build grit, and whether you know it or not, your children are watching your every move, especially how you react in these vulnerable moments.

I tell my kids that I was given the gift of being their mom — not to be their best friend, but to build them into incredible humans. With this being said, my tips for other show moms are:

  1. Let the house be messier than the
  2. Eat dinner after 9:00 (even on a school night).
  3. Learn to laugh at the moments that are often
  4. Buy more photos from the show photographer so that you’re not always watching through your camera
  5. Let kids be kids and run around with their
  6. Celebrate the second and third place
  7. Enjoy the noise in the show barn because soon it will be
  8. Don’t worry about what others are saying about you, your kids, or your

Always know that from one mom to the other, I see you — you are perfectly imperfect and absolutely none of us has it all figured out. We, as show moms, need to lift each other up, celebrate each other’s successes, rally around failures and be less focused on painting the perfect picture. It’s so important to be real and authentic with one another and with our kids. Try to be present where your feet are planted and cherish each moment, because in a second that moment could be gone forever. Enjoy today because we will not get it back. Tomorrow is a new day, and it’s also one day closer to their final time chasing that big win.