Charlie: My Toddler and My Inspiration

by Phil Bundy on January 6, 2009

Charlie and Phil Bundy - Click here for photo galleryMy toddler Charlie is my pride and joy and the inspiration for my quest to play on the PGA Tour.

When he was 9 months old, I introduced him to golf with a set of plastic golf clubs. While sitting-up, my little guy started whacking plastic golf balls, demonstrating strong eye-hand coordination. Once he was on foot and walking, balls littered the master bedroom, which had become Charlie’s indoor range. Every morning before heading to preschool, he enjoyed hitting a bucket of balls from one end of the room to the other.

Soon, he wanted to accompany me to the golf course, where we’ve developed a routine. Learning about etiquette and camaraderie, we first say hi to the pro in the golf shop. Then, we head to the driving range, where Charlie gets busy setting-up a practice station with his clubs, balls, and tees. He announces, “I’m going to use my boomer’” as he pulls the driver out of his bag. We alternate swings in order to slow down the rapid fire of his ammo.

Next, we spend time at the chipping and putting greens. I can actually work on my short game as my junior golfer is happy to work his way around the holes, yelling out a loud “Yes!” whenever he sinks a putt of any distance.

If we have time, we play a few holes. Charlie hits shots from the fairway and putts on the green. In the golf cart, he commands, “Dad, don’t drive too fast around the turn.” While I steer the wheel, he sits close and holds onto me for dear life.

At the end of our visit, we share a lemonade and snack in the clubhouse as he writes names and numbers on the scorecard. Somehow, he always wins and says, “Let’s show Mom.”

On my 40th birthday, I took Charlie to the golf course. Watching his joy as he ran across the fairway, my life-long love with golf flashed before my eyes. I wondered what I would say when he asks why I never tried to play the Tour. At that moment, I realized that I had to awaken my sleeping dream. I hope my quest to play on the PGA Tour will inspire Charlie to always pursue his dreams.

Who has inspired you? Your father, mother, son, daughter, or another family member? Maybe a teacher or coach? Take a moment to leave a comment and share your story.

Until next time, enjoy golf, America!

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