Alana "Honey Boo Boo" Thompson’s start on Dancing With the Stars: Juniors was not all fun and games, the star revealing to PEOPLE following Tuesday night’s cast announcement that her initial “let’s do it” attitude came to an abrupt halt when she hit a “breaking point.”
“I did hit a breaking point at one time,” Thompson said, admitting that Dance Moms star-turned singer Mackenzie Ziegler’s presence was intimidating. “I was like, ‘I’m never going to be better than her.’ But I kind of got past it because you don’t have to be the best dancer to win. It’s not just about being the best dancer. It’s about having fun, too.”
In August, the pint-sized TLC star was spotted exiting the CBS Studios in tears, presumably following Dancing With the Stars: Juniors rehearsals, and though Thompson may have gotten off to a rough start, she credits the support from her family and those on set for helping her get through.
“Everyone around me was so supportive,” she continued. “Some days I would get super nervous and frustrated, but Artem and Tristan were supportive and told me I was going to be great. If you’re questioning your abilities — I mean, I thought dancing was going to be the hardest thing ever to learn and to do, but it wasn’t as hard as I thought once we got the hang of it. If you’re going to do something, don’t be afraid to do it and just do it!”
“It meant a lot to have most of my sisters there because they both flew in from Georgia, which is like a four-hour flight,” she said. “It meant so much to have them there. And it meant a lot to have my mom there. She was so supportive. Just knowing they’re they to support me means everything.”
Thompson, who is partnered with junior dancer Tristan Ianiero and mentored by Artem Chigvintsev, will be going head-to-head with 11 other dancing teams as she competes for the Mirrorball Trophy.
Other tiny celebrities joining the Mama June:From Hot to Not star include Black-ish actor Miles Browns, Avengers actress Ariana Greenblatt, Scripps National Spelling Bee competitor Akash Vukoti, pro skater Sky Brown, Stevie Wonder's son Mandla Morris, NBA legend Scottie Pippen's daughter Sophia Pippen, General Hospital actor Hudson West, singer Mackenzie Ziegler, Bristol Palin's son Tripp Palin, Master Chef Junior winner Addison Osta Smith, and Raven's Home actor Jason Maybaum.
Dancing with the Stars: Juniors premieres Sunday, Oct. 7 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.