Archive | 11:22 PM

My Three-Year Old’s Definition of Confidence and Golf School

14 May

Some people have too much of it. Some people have too little. Either way that’s a problem. There has to be some kind of balance otherwise you can be an insecure basket case or just an ass.

As a writer confidence is a concept that comes and goes. One day you think you’ve written one of the best pieces of your life, only to have it rejected with a generic it’s-not-you-it’s-me letter from the publisher. Other days someone sees your writing and a small compliment can set you straight. All you ever need is a boost.

I learned this a long time ago, but was reminded of it by my son.

Confidence was the word of the week at my son’s golf school. “Believe in yourself. You can do it.” This is how I helped define it for him. Confidence combined with the putting green was something I found hilarious.

The Putting Green

All the ball has to do is go in the hole, whether you’re two feet away or ten feet away the mind games begin. So this is when the you-can-do-it-believe-in-yourself phase commences.

There they were … my son’s classmates lining up and knocking down the two-footers in one or two strokes. Then they’d move on to the next hole and repeat.

Then comes my son. One stroke. Two strokes. Ball still outside the hole. He looks at the ball confused. He steps back, pauses and examines the situation with all of his three-year old golf experience. He lines up again. Three. Four. Ball in the hole.

“I did it! I did it! Coach Jeff. I did it mom. The ball went in the hole.”

I smile. He comes over to high-five me and then goes on to hole No.2.

Throughout all the practice holes on the putting green I noticed the other kids making hole-in-ones. I noticed my son observing. I thought he would feel bad, and I was ready to cheer him up and tell him not to worry, that every golfer was different. But that didn’t happen. He got a little frustrated from time to time, but kept going. The best putt was hole No. 7, where he made it in two attempts.

He came back to the beginning and smiled.

As he drank his Gatorade, I asked him how he did.

“I did good. I have confidence, but my ball was not working.”

“Are you sure? I think they were all working.”

“No. No it wasn’t. The ball didn’t have confidence. But I made it anyways. We were winners. We believe in myself.”