Oh My Golf
I went to a pro golf tournament last weekend. I must confess only because a friend offered a free ticket. I was amazed at the discipline of the players. Their knowledge of the science of the angles and trajectory and the skill of identifying the winds effects on that little 1 1/2 inch ball. I was even impressed with how fast most of them walk from one of the 18 holes to another. I quickly started following along with the basic rules of the game and the how this particular tournament was going. 3 men standing, walking, hitting, and putting together yet all of their scores were being compared among all of the other 40 players. Again, how interesting a game that you play that you don't always know if you are winning or losing. What became troublesome to me were the rules for the spectators. When to walk, where to walk, where to stand, when to talk, when not to talk. Yes, I said when NOT to talk. By the amount I write, you can imagine that I talk equally as much. It was so hard for me. I learned where the golf clap really comes from. The quiet, polite, quietness of it all. You couldn't even walk by on a passing sidewalk if they were about to drive the ball down the course. I kind of felt like I was sad and didn’t have any joy. Don't get me wrong, golfers are talented athletes playing a tremendously difficult game but let’s compare this to another sport. On the same day I came home and watched a game in the NCAA basketball tournament. A young man standing on a line aiming at a basket not much larger than the ball in his hand while 20,000 overly enthusiastic fans stand screaming or booing, cheerleaders prancing their pom poms in the background, and his whole team depending on him. It just reminded me of life. Okay, it reminded me of MY life. The reality is, when I need to make a big decision, or do something very important, or I am trying to have something that resembles quiet time, my life is like a basketball game not a golf match. Dogs barking, kids playing, TV blaring, patients screaming, me thinking about a mistake I made last time I was in this situation, thinking about work tomorrow, dinner tonight, or my family hundreds of miles away. There is not someone who holds up their arms and clears a path and silences the craziness around me. There are things I have learned over the years that help me do that for myself. It may only be a few minutes or a split second that I need to quiet my mind, gather my thoughts, take a break or a take a deep breath. I have to have that discipline and skill to seek help from above, from within, or from someone else. I need a team and apparently I need an arena. Joy comes from the challenges that real life brings. That is real life for me. We are all tremendously talented athletes in this game called Life. Go team!