Hole In One

May 20th, 2011 Comments Off on Hole In One


Today I take my nine-year old son Cameron to the miniature golf course.  It’s  a day created twice a month to diffuse the competition between he and his little brother, Caleb.  He picks the activity.  My undivided attention is required.  It’s just Cameron, the golf clubs and me.

We choose a golf course nestled in a park, surrounded by trees, squirrels, ducks and a pond.  He is determined to get a hole in one, something he has never before achieved.  But at the first hole it takes him seven tries to get the little red ball where it needs to go.

“That makes me so mad!” he huffs.  “I’m no good at this!”

The second hole is worse.  He gets a tight look on his face and then, nine strokes later it finally goes in.

“Why did I pick this stupid game?”  His determination turns to frustration and then plain anger.

I’m getting frustrated as well, knowing that I can’t give him what he so badly wants.  We continue.  At holes three and four it only gets worse.  No hole in one, in fact not even a hole in three.

Finally, at the ninth hole, Cameron says, “Mommy, let’s just sit down for a while.  I am so mad and I think I just want to take a break.”

“Sure, this is your day!” I tell him.

We abandon our clubs on the dirt walkway and go sit under a big oak tree.   Cameron looks up at the tree and is quiet for a while.

“Mommy,” he says finally, “remember how you told me that our thoughts and our mood can affect what happens in our life?”

“Yes, honey, I remember.”

“And remember when we were driving that time, how it helped us?”

“Yes, I do.”

Cameron doesn’t say anything else and we both get lost in our own thoughts.

I’ve learned through much trial and tribulation that our thoughts always manifest something in our lives.  No matter the circumstance, we have the power to choose how to perceive it.  When my thoughts are good, my mood is good.  When my thoughts are negative, my mood reflects that. I instill these ideas into the boys’ minds in hopes of watching them grow into deliberately happy adults.

Cameron breaks the silence to remind me of the day we were driving home after a busy time of helping Pawpaw with grocery shopping and cleaning.  It was scorching hot outside and by the time we started for home, the traffic was horrific.

Cameron’s voice boomed.  “It’s hot!  I want to be home right now!  Would these cars move already?”

“We didn’t get to do anything fun!”  Caleb added.

The demeanor in the car was pure negative energy.  I wanted to be home as well.  But I knew that if I changed my attitude, things around me would begin to change.

“Hey, boys, you know what?  We always have happiness inside.  So how can we find that happiness right here and right now?”

“I’ll be happy when I am at home,” Cameron moaned.

He had missed the point.

“Yes, but we’re not home.  We’re sitting in a long line of cars at a red light,” I explained.  “We can’t change that.  What we can change is our attitude about it. Who knows?  If we do, we might just get home quicker.”

“Well . . . we get to be home schooled and don’t have to go to that boring school, Mom,” Cameron admitted reluctantly.

“I know!” said Caleb, always the clown.  “I can sing, ‘I’m so happy!  I’m so happy!’”

He started singing his happy song over and over and making silly faces in the process.   His enthusiasm was contagious and soon there were “I’m so happys” ringing out of everyone’s mouth.

Cameron was now laughing hard. “I don’t even care if the light changes.  We can sit here all day because I am happy right now!”.

“Me too!”  I chimed in.

“Me too!”  Caleb sang.

As we began to enjoy being stuck in the car, all of a sudden the traffic started moving.

“Hey guys, look!”  I exclaimed.  “The cars are moving.  I think we’re going to make this light after all.”

“Keep being happy!” Cameron was wide eyed as the cars part like the Red Sea.  “I think it’s working.”

We got through that light but the next light had turned red.

“I don’t care.  Let it turn red!  We’re gonna be happy no matter what, right Mommy?”  Cameron asked.

“Yes, sir, we are!”  I answered.

We turned on the radio and sang along.  Miraculously, the cars either moved or turned.  We had a wide-open street.  A drive that was sure to be a full forty-five minutes took us only twenty.  The boys just knew that I had revealed some kind of magic.  They couldn’t help but think they had moved the traffic with their attitudes.  They ran in to tell Daddy all about it.

Now, back under the oak tree, Cameron seems to return from some memory of his own.

“Mommy, I’ve been thinking about when we were driving and the traffic just moved and let us get home real quick.”

“Yes honey, it was amazing.”

“Well, we need to do that right now.  I AM going to get a hole in one today, but not if I get mad and frustrated.  I want to find my happy.”

I smile.

“Well, honey, how can you find your happiness right now?”  I look into his eyes.  We are connecting on some soul level, something beyond the mother/child relationship and onto something deeper and all knowing.

“I am happy to be spending time with you,” he says.  “I don’t care if I get the hole in one.  Just being out here in this great park, with a mom that is so fun, is enough for me.”

I bat back the tears that threaten to leak.  What mother would not love to hear that coming from her nine-year-old son?

“Well, let’s sing the happy song.”  I hop up and do a silly dance. !  “I’m so happy, I’m so happy!”

He gives me a sheepish grin and nods towards golf hole number ten, hinting that I not get too carried away.  We head to the pathway to retrieve our golf clubs.

“Mom, I don’t care!  I just don’t care if I get a hole in one.  I am going to have fun playing the game!”

I nod for him to go ahead and aim his club at the ball.

He grins real big, lets out a real quick “I’m so happy!” and pulls his club back.  Contact is made.  The little red ball spirals down the green, knocks into the side, and oh, it is impossible, but it goes straight into the hole.

We both begin jumping up and down and laughing.

“Mom, you are SO right!  It works, it really works!”

In that moment I realize that despite my many faults and worries as a parent, I am teaching my children something worthwhile

Cameron gets two more holes in one.  But more than those, he has realized a deep truth that will serve him well. He has learned he always has a choice about how he views his circumstances.  He can see the bad or the good.  The choice is his.   If he can remember to find his happy, I imagine he will move mountains.


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