‘Till death do you part…that or golf.
We had an understanding in our marriage. Sports were awesome, a unifying factor, if you will, and then he discovered the TaylorMades, Pings, Titleists, Callaways, and the pinche Golf Channel. Most women on the East Coast got it lucky, their dudes only golf in the Spring or Summer when the sun is shining, but here in the Golden State it’s golfing weather year-round. God-damn 15th Century Scots.
Here in California we got the scenic coastal courses and the desert courses designed by the likes of Arnold Palmer, Pete Dye, Greg Norman, and all the other golf legends in polyester plaid attire. But the course doesn’t even have to be good-looking. It can be next to a garbage dump and this dude will pick up his golf bag at 6 a.m. to hit the links.
Our original arrangement was that he got one day during the week to do what ever he wanted and that usually included a golf outing. I knew he liked golf. I knew he played golf. I was aware. It wasn’t like a slow process of discovery. It was part of the deal and I accepted it. I mean I played golf. Granted I suck, but I play and figured it was something we could do every once in a while. We were family now, right? No matching visors. No his and hers sweaters. Just golf.
Dude. I realized…nobody wants their chick with them on the golf course, unless she drives the beverage cart. Well maybe just one percent of guys enjoy their partner’s presence on the green, but the 99 percent that remains…well…
Little by little it became more than a day or afternoon. It was 10-to-12 hour adventure. From dawn to dusk. Then, during the week he began with the driving range and the putting green and then God help me the Haney Project. It infested the house like a rodent. I had become a Golf Widow, which is weird seeing as most Latino women are futbooooooooooool widows. But no…golf became his passion, and the kids, the Huggies Diapers, the dog, the tub needing Ajax, the bills, college football, tailgating, triathlon training, bike riding, cooking, movies, HBO, and reading bed time stories…this had become my new adventure.
He worked and golfed. I disappeared into finding the humor in single motherhood and situations like poop in underwear, or not being able to shower everyday because I had two kids to entertain. I wondered why I began looking like I lived through the Grapes of Wrath and he had this Coppertone glow about him. I began imagining what would happen if his clubs mysteriously disappeared into the Goodwill Donation box until my son picked up one of his clubs and began swinging away. He was two at the time. I didn’t want to make his future bride a golf widow herself, so I immersed myself in the sport with him and we became golf buddies. I taught him the art of sharing and having golf buddies, like mom, and not just boys. Hope it sticks.
My son showed such an interest that he got his own miniature set of clubs. A driver, a wood, and a putter. I taught him how to hold the club, swing the club, and most importantly keep his eye on the ball. This went on for some time before his dad realized that our son had picked up the sport and became quite good swinging away at the driving range. My husband began putting in his own two cents and watching golf with our son. I thought I had lost my little one and then that’s when it happened…
All of us had gone to the driving range. My son was as excited as always for his bucket of golf balls to come charging out of the machine. We found a spot in line and set up. Old, young, middle-aged…all these men smiled as my son passed by in his little golf bag and set himself up. He began placing the range balls on the tee and swinging away, most of them were great, others trickled off the padding. But for the most part he made good contact.
It was a proud moment I didn’t think it could get any better and then it did.
The golf professional passed by and my son continued swinging. My husband began chit-chatting with golf-pro, hand on my son’s shoulder, beaming and smiling from ear-to-ear as I sat on the bench in the background, like an unplugged soda machine.
Then the pro told my son: “You are a good golfer…”
“Am am I good golfer.”
“And who taught you to play golf this well?” He asked, while looking at my husband. My husband smiled and gave our son a pat on the back.
My son smiled and said….”Mom. My mom.”