When Golf Becomes Part of Their Future
Parent Blog by Iris Perico
When our son Julián was 3 years old, my husband Juan asked me to take him for golf lessons to the club where we are members. I thought it will be boring for our little son, but still I took him. He grabbed his first golf club and started hitting the ball. When he finished I asked him if he had enjoyed it and he said that he did and that he wanted to keep on taking lessons. It was right then when Julian´s passion for golf started. At 5, he started competing and soon enough he was chosen by the Peruvian Golf Federation to represent Perú at the Callaway Junior World Championship.
He prepared for the tournament and there we went. He met children from all over the world and the experience was absolutely magical for him and for us. When we travelled back to Perú, where we live, he said he wanted to move to the United States to a golf academy. We thought he was out of his mind and actually did not pay that much attention to him regarding moving abroad.
Since then he always said, “I want to be a golfer. I want to move to the U.S.”
Eight years went by and one summer Julian came to me and said, “Mom, there is a golf academy in Florida, very close to Orlando. Please let me go. It is a safe place. Mom please let me go. I will be fine. I promise. The place is incredible. At least take a look at it. Please mom.”
I talked to my husband, who always wanted Julian to experience traveling abroad by himself and doing what he loves. I agreed to send him for four weeks the first time. He was 14 by then.
The three of us, my husband, Francesco our youngest boy and myself traveled with Julian to drop him at Bishops Gate Golf Academy.
We arrived and were highly impressed by the place. The perfect environment for Julian to be. Right on the course, by a beautiful lake. A loving woman was waiting for him. Lynda was her name. She showed us his house and around.
After not more than 2 or 3 minutes Julian turned around and said, “Mom you guys can leave, I will be fine.” That was it for him. He was totally in love with the place. We knew in our hearts that was the right place for our son. As a latin mother, it is not easy to let go of my kids. I prayed for months and finally I knew he will be ok. He kept going back and forth for two consecutive years.
Now Julian is a full timer at BGGA. He really enjoys it. He has a passion for golf that started when he was 3. He has a great team that works with him.
BGGA is not only a golf academy for Julian. It is home. “It feels like home”, he says. He has found a family there. Friends from all over the world pursuing their passion. He has found a place where he can work hard and has all the support to help him achieve his goals. Professionals who want to help him out and at the same time caring people that listen not only to him but also to us, the parents. People that are willing to make things happen not only because it is their job but also because they like what they do and have passion for it. People that are compromised, great leadership. That is what I saw the first time I went there and things have only gotten better.
We see happy kids whenever we stop by. They work very hard. They go to school and have a full day that starts early in the morning and finishes in the evening. Sending them to bed for a rest and getting them ready to start another full day the next morning.
BGGA is not only about golf. Is also about the mental part of it and the physical training.
BGGA is about achieving an academic standard at school that will get the kids ready for college, with the help of Montverde Academy, a school that is 30 minutes away and where BGGA students attend.
BGGA is the place were our kids live, where they mature, where they get frustrated, where they get homesick, where they turn from kids to young men and women of good. It’s a place with values and with morals. BGGA is a place where kids have to respect people and get respected.
My advice to parents after this experience is to listen to our kids, hold their hands, let them fly being always there for them and trusting GOD will guide them and us through the beautiful journey called LIFE.