Since I was 8 years old all I have ever dreamed about was becoming a professional golfer. I would go watch PGA or LPGA tour events and just knew that was what I wanted to do. I knew multiple professional golfers and watched their every move, studying the intent in which they practiced, prepared, even the way they talked about golf. It has been all I can imagine for as long as I can remember. Every decision in my life was focused towards becoming a professional golfer. Through the ups and downs of life, golf has always been there for me. It has been my outlet in times of stress, sadness, difficulty and adversity. Any time I needed to clear my mind or find an escape from the harshness of the world, I turned to golf. This always worked out in my favor. The harder life got, the more I would practice; until eventually I found myself ranked the #1 amateur in the world.
The past few years have been a true struggle for me. When I first turned pro, I put so much pressure on myself to succeed and when I fell short, I turned to so many temporary solutions searching for something that would lead to playing well. Instead, I found myself more confused and frustrated by the day and so far off track from where I started. You see so many pros have their "team" and I fell into the trap. I listened to the voices around me. Everyone meant well but when you become aware of what everyone else thinks you should be doing, you lose sight of what got you where you are to begin with. And for me, what got me to the top was a love of golf, a strong determination, and confidence.
The most recent struggle for me has been my injury. No matter how bad I want it to heal, how much therapy or rest I have done, it continues to bother me. There have been good phases and bad throughout this process for sure. There are days where I have no pain and days I am in constant debilitating pain. My situation with my injury is constantly changing. Recently, I have had a lot of good days. I thought I was close to recovery and was feeling better by the day. I started to hit balls with little to no pain and felt like I was close to being at 100%. I played 9 holes a few times with little difficulty and would just take it easy afterwards. I drew up a schedule for the summer and felt like I could be ready for competition by July. I was utterly convinced I was going to be "me" again, playing with freedom and grinding to get better every day, then, I tried to play 18 holes. I struggled through most of it and by the 14th hole I had to stop. Unfortunately, my shoulder has been bothering me pretty badly ever since. I had to withdraw from a pro am that I was really looking forward to and clear my schedule of upcoming golf events which was really disappointing for me.
So now I'm left to the reality that after 9 months away from competitive golf, I am still in pain. The one thing I have always used as an outlet for my stress and to challenge my energy is still out of reach for me right now. Thankfully, my family has really stuck by me through all of this and helped me realize a few important things the past couple of months, one of those being; I don't have control of the situation. I have had to realize that it is okay to let go. And to not know what the next move is. If you always have everything planned out and have your mind made up, you might miss another opportunity that comes your way. And secondly; it will all work out how it is supposed to, it always has and it always will. You are handed adversity in life to make you stronger and to teach you how to get back up- no matter what that path looks like. So getting down on yourself or feeling negatively about the situation is pretty pointless. Your mindset and outlook is what is going to allow you to be in the right position for the next opportunity.
For right now, I don't have the answers and I have to be okay with that. I am going to listen to my heart and figure out what is best for me. Obviously, I hope to be able to return to my passion and will continue to fight to get myself healthy again. But I won't get there by forcing it or trying to expedite my recovery. I have to learn how to be happy with right now and that not always having a plan is not only okay, but normal. You should have goals and aspirations set out for the future but along the way, there might be some detours. I will learn how to take the detours as they come and enjoy every minute of it.
In todays world filled with pretty pictures on social media, I feel it is important to explain to you all that I am struggling in some aspects of life. I have a ton of positive things in my life that are going great but as far as golf goes, it has been a hard journey. I started this blog to encourage myself as well as others to take steps to live a happy, healthy and purposeful life. This doesn't mean you have to have everything figured out but it does mean that you put in the effort to improve and to become better in different aspects. The blog has held me accountable and taught me how to help others through my experiences. If you are going through a difficult or uncertain time, just know that you are not the only one. Sometimes, I keep everything to myself and I wouldn't be being totally honest if I was only sharing the positive things I have going on. I hope this will shed a light on what goes on "behind the scenes" since I have been asked many times what my next move is or what my plans are, and sometimes that is a hard one for me to answer- because Im still trying to figure that out!
As you all know, I have been in Singapore for the past few weeks. I extended my trip to be with Taylor for a couple more weeks. We will be in Seoul, Korea for a few days and then Hong Kong for a few days before I head back to the US! She has some work in both of these places and I have been given an opportunity to assist her during these trips. It was an amazing opportunity for me that came out of something negative (my shoulder flaring up) but has been turned into something positive. I am so grateful for the time with my sister as well as being able to have new experiences. For now, I am taking everything one step at a time and continuing to enjoy the journey! Thank you all for following along and supporting me through it all.