Those of you who regularly read this blog may recall that our first junior golf clinic at Ranken Jordan was on May 10, 2011. I readily admit that when we started the junior golf program there I did not know what to expect. The only thing I wanted to do was help the kids and put smiles on their faces. Fortunately the kids, their families, and the Ranken Jordan staff were patient with me as we all learned together. There were plenty of laughs, smiles, made putts, and long drives. One thing that did surprise me, though, was the level of interest in the program from the parents and siblings of the patients. It was during a conversation with the mother of one of the patients that I got my first of many lessons from the kids and their families.
As I mentioned, I will never forget the look on that wonderful lady's face when she said the word "normal." This was one of the earliest times in our program that I realized this was much more than golf. In a wide variety of ways, the game was helping kids get better, helping families heal, and helping to bridge that transition back to home. The game of golf was not just helping these amazing kids heal in the physical sense. It was also helping them, and their families, heal mentally, emotionally, and socially. I am so proud to say that 6 years later nothing has not changed. All of us associated with the junior golf program at Ranken Jordan cherish the opportunity to introduce the kids to the game of golf and teach them how they can play regardless of their medical issues. However what we enjoy the most, and I am certain I can speak for everyone on this, is watching the children heal and get back to living their lives to the fullest. We do as Mrs. Jordan said, "consider the children first in all you do."