Tuesday, July 17, 2012

~on lessons and putting~

So, I never told you what went down when we went putt-putting.

The day was beautiful, the sun was shining, and we were with family.  What more can one ask for? 

The boys had free coupons to use that they had gotten from the library.  It was part of their summer reading program prize and it included these putt-putt tickets. Luckily they had dropped an extra one in and we though we'd ask their cousin, Kory, if he wanted to join. 

We headed down south to grandma's house and picked her and Kory up. 
The five of us were headed to the Miniature Golf Course to have some fun!

After picking out putters, balls, and getting a picture with the cool Indians out front, they decided which course to play. 

The trees above provided a beautiful canopy of shade and I enjoyed taking pictures of the nature around us just as much as snapping photos of the kids.


I had two jobs this day: offical scorekeeper and photographer. 

Unfortunately, I was more passionate about one job than the other. It wasn't the score keeping.

Everything was going perfect until the end.
Here's what went down right before they started the last hole (18):

Austin: "Who's winning mom?"

Mom: "I'm not sure, Austin.  Let me count."

Mom: *begins to count up the scores and looks up.... confused*

Mom: "Oh shoot!  Is this the last hole?"

Austin: "Yep. Why?"

Mom: "Well, from the scorecard it looks as though we are only on hole 14.  Hmmm???"

Austin: "You've got to be kidding me!  That's because you're too busy taking pictures instead of writing our scores down!  Mom!!!!"

Mom:  "Here... I'll fix it.  I think  I remember what holes I forgot to write down.  I'll just erase and move over these holes and you can replay the ones I missed."

Mom: *frantically erasing and rewriting and guessing and sweating* 

Austin: "This is ridiculous.  I can't believe you did this."

Mom: "Sorry guys."

Austin: "What's the point of playing if we don't know who won?"

And that's when it hit me. 
Like a ton of bricks. 
How could I have forgotten? 

In the midst of snapping away photos of the beauty around us, enjoying the company of my mom and seeing my nephew, loving the excitement and joy in my boys eyes at each hole... I forgot. 

This is Austin we are talking about. 
Mr. Competitive. 

Right then and there I looked down at the boys.  All three of them were standing there in front of me, eyes looking up for answers, fixated on me. Waiting for me to FIX this mess.

And what did I do?

I looked straight into the depths of my son Austin's eyes and answered his question. 

Mom: "The fun of it. That's the point, Austin."

And I did the unthinkable.
As I voiced those words I shredded that messed up scorecard into as many pieces as I possibly could.  

I walked over to the trash can and let the pieces fall like rain into the metal red container.   

I'll never forget the look on his face. 

He played that last hole in silence. And at the end of this final hole the ball dropped into the cup forever. 

It was carried off into a tube that leads to a crate full of colorful balls all waiting to be retrieved by the owner.

I felt like that ball was my son's heart dropping into that cup.

Rolling away into a create, waiting to be retrieved by his mom.

I walked over to him, no words spoken, put my arms around him, embraced him into a huge hug and kissed the top of his head.

He looked up and smiled at me under the brim of his baseball cap. 

And that's when I saw it.

This boy of mine is growing up.

He learned an important lesson this day.  One that I hope stays with him forever. It's not always about winning. 

I learned one as well.  I need to put the camera down and just live in the moment instead of having to always try and capture it. 

Memories are the best photos in life.  



Kim Corrigan-Oliver said...

Love this post! So many lessons are missed each day, happy you both caught the ones on this day.

Ashley Spriggs said...

Wow! Our lives are so similiar it is kind of scary. I took Ayden and his friend Jalen put-putting on Saturday. I was also the scorekeeper and photographer. Ayden also kept asking for the score and I told him I wanted him to have fun and not worry about the score. Although I did not tear up the score card, I fixed it so that it would be a "tied-up" game so that they both would "win". I enjoyed looking at your pics from the day!!

Heather aka Proud Mama said...

Such a tricky lesson. Glad you were there to hold him as he discovered this truth. It is tough when you try to document it. You miss a bit when behind the lens. Good reminder to stay present and truly live.

Lisa Coffee said...

Beautiful lesson. And his smile in that last picture... seems like he gets it.

Melissa said...

Oh, those are some of the toughest moments...teaching and learning lessons. Well done!

Tracey said...

Life is all about learning and I think you did a great job!
You have some very cute young men there.

Amber said...

Ah yes. I get you. I usually leave the house with the kids without the camera even though inside a little voice is saying, What about the pictures....???
Thanks for sharing.

krisha said...

Dear Kelly
My internet connection are not that great here on the Island, so I can't see your golf course pictures, but I love this story. When reading it I can kinda see it happening.You absolutely did the right thing!
Hope you are having a great weekend.

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