STEPPING AWAY FROM COMPETITIVE GOLF AND EXCITED FOR NEW OPPORTUNITIES
Last Saturday was one of those days that will stay with me forever. It might sound as a cliché to you, but yesterday I experienced something I never had the pleasure to experience before — victory as a spectator.
All of you are aware by now, that for circumstances outside of my control; I found myself forced to step away from the game. It all started with a TFL tear during the last day of my first event of the year on January 2018, and it ended with multiple relapses during my attempts to get back at it. I emphasize the word ended, because I have made a personal decision to stay away from competitive golf.
The decision didn’t come to me just last night or Saturday night, and having my boyfriend win Wimbledon didn’t accelerate my public announcement either. This change of heart came to me a few months ago, during my last attempt to join my fellow competitors on the LPGA. When I suffered another relapse, mentally I couldn’t take it anymore. And to be completely honest with you guys, my heart wasn’t truly in it either. A lot has happened and in the process of becoming mentally stronger during this dark phase, I learned that there is a beautiful world for me out there, outside the LPGA ropes. So again, excuse my redundancy, but I want to clarify that Robert’s success didn’t propel me to make this decision. I definitely felt encouraged to share it publicly today with you merely from what I felt while watching Robert win. That joy I felt was not the same joy I was feeling while competing these last few years. And even though I am not closing my career for poor performance (because I got injured during one of my best times in my career) and since I still have full status on Tour if I want to come back next year, I still encouraged myself to be brave and seek new adventures.
I cannot say that I had anything close to that kind of success during my professional career, but I had my shining moments. However, personal success when you are an athlete is very different than when you are a spectator. When you watch from the sidelines, that feeling of joy seems to linger on. Whereas, when you are competing, the moment of joy after a victory last seconds, maybe minutes. The brain and mindset of an athlete are wired differently. And the joy is overshadowed by the eagerness of needing to know what to do next to win again, or to keep up with world rankings.
So here I am today, announcing to you that I have decided to seek other personal opportunities outside of the LPGA Tour and competitive golf. I have made peace with the fact that I will no longer compete at an elite level and I feel great about it. I had a desirable junior career and a fruitful professional career and I am now ready to face the next stage of my life and venture into new terrains.
Yes, I will be a tennis wife. But I have been a tennis wife for the last 10 years, and 9 of them during my active professional golf career. As well as Robert has been a golf husband. And both of us embraced our roles with the same exact pride. But besides accompanying my boyfriend on Tour, I will also be pursuing some incredible things that fill me with joy.
There are definitely some more things to share through my blog like talking openly about my mental struggles during my injury and during my continuous relapses. Which I truly want to open up with you guys about, but I need to find the perfect moment to do it. I will also be talking about how I felt about taking on jobs after being a tour professional player all my life and so much more!
Meanwhile, thank you for sharing your words of encouragement and support with me. You know I am as real as it can get, and my transparency with you is what makes our relationship so cool!
Big hug and be brave!