I wasn’t an athletic kid. I stumbled, couldn’t hit a baseball if my life depended on it, and dodgeball was my personal hell. I wasn’t the last kid picked for the teams but I was in the bottom 10%. I really wanted to run like the wind and be decent at sports (note: I didn’t say “good at sports”. My goals were realistic.).
I was pretty good at making baskets whenever we played Horse on the playground. Finally, something where I could achieve a modicum of success! The first week of basketball practice in middle school and a six foot tall Amazon landed on my foot and broke at least one of my toes. It was the end of my basketball career. I realized at only five foot three inches I was at a disadvantage. Besides, my foot turned black and blue, swelling so much my toes curled under my foot. It wasn’t something I wanted to repeat.
One of my friends ( another writing nerd) informed me she was trying out for the golf team. It isn’t much of a tryout. Everyone makes the team unless they decide they don’t want to do it anymore. Golf wasn’t a contact sport, and I didn’t need to run. It sounded like a win-win to me.
My dad was pleased I was trying something different. He bought me a set of golf clubs with the understanding I needed to persevere and not give up since “golf clubs aren’t cheap!”
And, play I did. I played on the golf teams through middle school, high school, and college. My first date with my husband was playing 36 holes of golf. We walked the hilly course and carried our own golf bags. Ah, youth…(wistful sigh, insert here).
Through the years, we continued to play but the frequency depended on how busy our lives/jobs were and how strapped financially we were at the time. And for some inexplicable reason, I stopped playing seven years ago. That is, until last week when I picked up my clubs and headed to the driving range to hit some golf balls.
Truly, I was worried. I was in much better shape physically than I was the last time I’d played, but I was also much older now. It went fairly well. Some balls responded exactly as they should have, and others rolled a few feet away leaving evidence of my inconsistency and my sloppy swing.
Undeterred by my less than stellar performance, I told my husband I wanted to play a few holes of golf. I proceeded to bogey and double bogey multiple holes. Most of my puts were laughable, but I did sink a forty-footer (smile). I ended up in not one, but three bunkers.
Nine holes later, I was smiling, sunburnt and had stiff and aching shoulders. It was great fun. I didn’t let my poor putting or uneven play depress me, because golf IS only a game and with more practice time and rounds of golf under my belt, I know I will improve.
See you out on the links!