In seventh grade when my mom suggested I join the golf league, I thought she had gone temporarily insane. Despite the fact that I had been taking golf lessons almost since before I could walk, I had never played nine real holes of golf. And she wanted me to join a league? I was sure the woman had lost her mind. As always, my mother won. I played on the middle-school golf team in seventh grade ... and eighth. The summer before freshmen year rolled around, I had a burning desire to play on the high-school team.
I spent that summer on the golf course with my parents. At a time when most teenagers are rebelling and trying to spend the smallest amount of time possible with their parents, I was growing closer than ever to mine. I spent almost every Sunday morning on the golf course with my dad, and too many afternoons to count on the course with my mom. This incredible relationship with my parents continued during my high-school years and Mom and I credit it to the hours spent together on the golf course. When you’re walking down the freshly mowed fairway, staring out across miles of nothing but golf course, and looking up at a beautiful blue sky, you realize what is important in life. My mom and I have solved most of the world’s problems there and plan to write a book together one day. We talk about things in the middle of a round of golf that we never would at home, where she is Mom and I am an annoying teenager. On the golf course, we’re just two people who love golf.
High-school golf is about more than hitting a golf ball into a hole. For me, it’s been about being part of a team and ours is unique, since golf isn’t something anyone can do. The 12 girls on the team are special. I don’t know many who can step up on a tee box, pull out a Great Big Bertha driver, and launch the ball 200 yards straight down the fairway.
Golfing has become a part of me during the past six years. My friends know in the summer the place to find me is on the golf course. There is nothing I love more than a perfect fall morning riding around in a golf cart with my dad. Golf has shaped me and made me into the person I am today. And unfortunately, I have to admit that all of it is thanks to my mom making me join that middle-school golf league. I guess she was right - as usual.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.