It's no surprise that Sea Gal Mhkeeba is known on the squad as the "Snack Queen." When you're a mom, Rule No. 1 is Always Be Prepared – with snacks, Band-Aids, and if you're a mother who also happens to be a Sea Gal, rhinestones and dry shampoo.
"I have that emergency pouch that moms always have," said Mhkeeba, producing a small pink bag from her duffel. "This pouch has medicine, rhinestones, safety pins, lotions, dry shampoo, you name it. I'm that person.
"And everyone knows that as a mom, you always have to bring snacks."
Like a certain star quarterback is fond of saying, the separation is in the preparation. And being prepared for any situation is one of many life lessons Mhkeeba, a fourth-year veteran, can relate to her experience as a Sea Gal. Others include perseverance, giving back to the community, and the importance of being beautiful on the inside – something she reinforces with her 8-year-old daughter, Simone.
"I think it's important because there is so much more to being a Sea Gal then just dancing and performing," Mhkeeba said. "[Simone] thinks it's so glamorous with the makeup and the hair. She says, when I'm a Sea Gal, will I get to wear lashes?"
Photos of Sea Gal Mhkeeba.
False eyelashes may be a bit much for a little girl, but when Simone joins her mom on the CenturyLink Field turf this Friday for the Jr. Sea Gal halftime performance at the Seahawks' first preseason game of the year, she'll get to wear a bit of blush – and maybe a little mascara.
"The funny thing is, she ends up covering [the makeup] with the Seahawks face paint," Mhkeeba said. "She wants to be grown up, but she's still a little girl."
On game day, Mhkeeba will go into "super mom planning mode," making sure she and her daughter both have everything they need, from makeup to uniforms to Skittles. Then, when the lights go up for halftime, Simone will run onto the field with her mom and the other 250 Junior Sea Gals for a special one-time performance (To learn more about the Jr. Sea Gals program, click here).
"As a mom, it's an honor to be out here," said Mhkeeba, who also has a son Quentin, 10. "I try to teach my kids that if there's something you really want to do, you have to go for it. They see me work hard at it.
"It's not something that comes as easily as some of the younger girls on the squad, but I give it 120 percent."