Why Do I Play Golf?
Why Do I Play Golf?
Golf was introduced to me as a teenager. My parents and brother played. We were a golfing family, members at the Idylwylde Golf Club, a private club in Sudbury, Ontario.
We played golf together on Sundays and my brother and I took part in junior clinics at the club throughout the week and evenings. I think having my brother with me sparked my competitive spirit and I worked hard on my game to beat him…which I never did. We would play mini games around the clubhouse, putting green and driving range always making a bet before executing a swing. My friends were all at the club, not many girls, but I spent most of my days at the club from sunup to sundown with my brother and his friends. We ate all our meals there…that made my parents upset. They had the best steamed hot dogs at the halfway hut we needed a couple each day and a Shirley temple to wash it down. We tried to reason with our parents that they never had to buy groceries in the summer.
I was lucky to have a female golf professional at the club who taught me at weekly clinics, and I was drawn to her positivity and patience. I often wonder if I would have stuck with it if she was not around? I started to play competitive golf in towns across Northern Ontario and started to take it seriously around the age of 17. Playing golf and trying to get better was my focus. My last year as a junior I won the Girls Club Champion trophy!
Golf gave me the independence I craved. Golf taught me about following rules, social etiquette and respect. Golf gave me control. I could work alone and achieve something based on the work I put into it. Golf does not dependent on anybody else. It is just you and the course. Golf taught me how to organize and ignore thoughts in my head.
My first job was in golf. The first summer of University I returned to my club to work on the grounds crew. I cut the holes every day. I grew to love the early mornings, dewy grass, the grass smell and sunrises. The second summer I worked at Ashburn Golf Club, a private club in Halifax where I started as the driving range attendant and worked through the ranks to Class A Associate Golf Professional over the next 14 years. This is where I met my husband, a future golf professional too. I loved being at the club. On my days off I was there practicing and playing. I turned professional in 1999.
My friends are at the golf course. My most enduring friendships are with people I golf with. We can still tell the same stories. Our memory seems to change year after year, but we still laugh as though it was the first time, we have heard it.
In 2013 after a short hiatus to raise my family and work a government job with regular hours I launched my own business Metro Ladies Golf Inc. to encourage and support women in Halifax to take up the game. I missed the game and the people! I worked harder than ever to grow my business, but it never felt like work. Now I teach golf for a living. I am just so thankful that this game in all its beauty and long hours can support myself and family. I get to do what I genuinely Love. I also enjoy my role at Oakfield Golf & Country Club where I am the Director of Instruction. My three children started to golf around the age of 3 and I support them the way my first golf teacher did with patience and positivity. Time will tell if they get the golf bug but no matter how long or hard my day is when they call me to play golf after work, I play. Last summer we enjoyed a bucket list trip to Cabot and now I have golf partners for life.
Six years ago, I made the decision to play all the beautiful courses in Atlantic Canada. I have organized trips to PEI, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia and I am truly thankful that the sea gets to be the backdrop for all of it.
In these troubling times when there is so much uncertainty, I felt it was more important than ever to connect to my why. It is so easy to start to doubt the industry, the job and start the search for a career that will keep me working during another pandemic. My friends and family are in golf. My heart is in golf. And now more than ever I am more committed to creating great golf experiences for my clients, family, and myself.
So I will ask you, Why do you golf?