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When Carrie Underwood was just a kid, she could sing… but she was a bit shy about it. But her mom Carole gave her the push she needed, much to Carrie’s chagrin.

Carole Underwood talked with The Today Show revealing that although Underwood competed in talent shows from an early age, she sometimes disliked it so much that she cried.

Carrie’s mother said, “And you know, she hated it, because her friends were gonna be out there. She didn’t like to sing in front of her friends. And sometimes it was like, she might be crying before she would get up there to sing, but she did it.”

Carole also told Today that she saw her daughter as “a gift from God” early on and pleaded with a friend who headed up the local Chamber of Commerce in Checotah, Oklahoma, to secure spots for Underwood in various talent shows.

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