Grandpa, Golf & Life

For anyone who knew my grandpa, they know that he loved and had a passion for the game of golf. Golf was grandpa’s life. Grandpa always told me, “Crystal, golf is the only sport you can play throughout your whole lifetime. Whether you are young or old golf is always going to be there.” Well needless to say, he applied that statement to his life. He devoted his life to what he loved to do, and never gave up persevering to the best of his ability. My Grandpa’s dedication for the game of golf ultimately ended up teaching me four major keys to life.

1. Mental Strength

Through grandpa I have learned that life is a lot like golf. For example, golf is a sport in which requires a lot of mental strength to be able to perform well. Mr. Arnold Palmer once said, “Success in golf depends less on strength of body than upon the strength of mind and character.” This is important because I have learned the success to life always narrows down to a persons character and attitude. These two characteristics are distinct from any other because unlike talents these traits are not just given to us. We have to personally build them by our thoughts and choices throughout life because ultimately they define who we are as a person.

2. Embracing the Good

Another way golf resembles life is by embracing the good in every situation. In golf, bad shots, high numbers and hazards are bound to happen to everyone within their golfing career. Anyone who golfs knows that golf is a hard game to master. Sometimes it takes those few hits in the woods to appreciate the game because if everyone just hit hole-in-ones no one would even have an interest in the sport. This is important to remember because both golf and life are difficult, and is one bad golf shot going to stop you from playing the game for good? Whether we are ready or not life tends to bring us challenging situations. That’s the way life is, but the way I see it we can either take situations as a lesson or a blessing. Either way giving up is never an option in life. I’ve learned that it’s important to not let life obstacles destroy my attitude towards what really matters in life.

3. Expect the Unexpected

I’ve also learned that maybe Forrest Gump isn’t the only one who has a good analogy on life because I see life, as like a round of golf, you never know what you’re going to hit. I’m sure my grandpa would have loved to have talked about that connection. Perpetually strive to do your best in life. Although when unexpected situations pop up, always expect yourself to continue moving forward to the best of your ability.

4. Love

The last time I spoke with my grandpa was over lunch shortly before leaving to head back up for my sophomore year of college. I can remember this day like it was yesterday, but what really stood out in the conversation was when Millie, my grandma, was brought up. I unfortunately was unable to meet my grandma (due to a drunk driver collision), but from what I have heard I know she was a caring person who touched many lives. This had been the first time grandpa shared with me what he went through the day she passed. Just sitting there listening to him was tough because I could see and feel the pain he still felt from the day my grandma passed. He cared about grandma so much. As hard as it is to lose my grandpa, it brings me comfort knowing that he is happy, and reunited with grandma again.

Grandpa was not just my “grandpa,” he was my best friend. I could talk to him about anything, and to be completely honest that is exactly what I miss most about him. The memories I have made with my grandpa along with the lessons I have learned will remain in my heart forever, as so will he. Jesus apparently needed someone to teach him a few more golf skills, and heaven knows grandpa is the perfect man for the job.

Thank you for everything, Grandpa!



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