Everyone has their own personal cheerleader.
Whether it's your best friend rooting you on, your sibling or your spouse, somebody's there to keep your spirits up.
For me, hands down, it's my mom.
Obviously, your mother is going to be your No. 1 fan no matter what you do.
And as we celebrate Mother's Day Sunday, I've got to take some time to explain just why Darlene Bilby is so special to me.
Through some of the hardest times of my adult life - and there has been some pretty rough ones in recent years - my mom has always encouraged me to come out on top.
Keep your head up, she says, and things will get better.
Never give up on what you love.
Always keep a good head on your shoulders, and do your best.
Gee, sounds like something a coach might say to an athlete, doesn't it?
While I was hurling shot puts and running around the track at Jersey Shore in high school, my mom was there cheering me on.
As I went through college and learned all about being on my own, my mom was still there to check on me.
But really, where she has been there the most for me is after college and up until now.
She lets me do my laundry every week at her house. Of course, that entails taking care of her two dogs and three cats while I'm there. But hey, a small price to pay for the courtesy of not having to go to the laundry mat.
My mom still cooks meals for my sister, brother-in-law and I every Sunday after church. Let's face it, you are never too old for a home-cooked meal from your mom. Those of us who went away to college and returned home know this fact all too well.
When her work schedule allows, she sits next to me during sporting events. I introduced her to the wonderful world of Legion baseball last summer. She had her taste of Jersey Shore softball's incredible run last season - even getting an unexpected hug from former coach Jeremy Lazorka after a game - and she also got to watch some wrestling.
Mind you, my mom had never been to a wrestling match in her life. But just to spend some time with me, she sat next to me while I tried to sound like I knew what I was talking about.
She has been to numerous basketball games with me. And finally, after years of working Friday nights, she was able to attend Jersey Shore's home football games.
I couldn't sit with her, but that was OK. She still managed to bring me a soda at halftime, wait for me after the game was over as I did my interviews and walk to my car with me, making sure I was going to drive back to The Express safely.
My mom gets a thrill out of seeing my name in the newspaper.
She's probably stunned to see her name right now, but she deserves it.
I started at The Express fresh out of college in August of 2006, and my mom has saved every single one of my stories.
A pretty mammoth task, if you ask me. I stopped collecting clips several years ago, but not my mom.
"I'm just not ready to yet," she said.
Last year, I was able to take my mom to her first Penn State game at Beaver Stadium.
She absolutely loved it.
In July, we'll be heading to Philadelphia to see the Phillies beat the Atlanta Braves.
I haven't been to a baseball game with my mom since I was about 12.
When I cringe about a story I've written, she applauds me and says how good I've done. If I'm not happy about an interview I did, she reminds me about how much she likes what I write and how much she looks forward to reading my stories.
She's pretty good at lifting my spirits - only in a way that a mom can.
My mom is the strongest person I know. My stepfather, Paul, was deployed overseas several years ago for a year. My mom kept her household running, managed to work 60-hour weeks and still make time for me to spend the night whenever I wanted.
Paul was deployed again this year, and returned a few weeks ago for a two-week leave. My mom had to drive him to the airport today where he'll fly back overseas until he returns home for good next year.
I honestly don't know how she does it, but she does. I like to think I get my best qualities from her.
So, Mom, here's the best present I know to give you - using my talent to show everyone just how much you mean to me. You've been there for me, supported me and motivated me to be my best.
For that, I'll always be grateful.
Happy Mother's Day, Mom.
Kim Moerschbacher is a sports writer at The Express. She can be reached at email@example.com.