Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Cancer Changes People

Phil Mickelson’s final putt to win the Master’s last year in Augusta as his wife was looking on in the gallery moved even the most hardened golf fans to tears. Amy Mickelson was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2009. Last year’s Master’s was the first tournament she had attended since her diagnosis and subsequent treatment. It was a great moment whether you are a golf fan or not. I will never forget the look on her face as the ball went in the hole to secure his victory.



The Master’s is a tournament chalked full of intriguing traditions. For example: the reigning winner is allowed to choose the menu for the Champions Dinner which will be held this evening in Augusta. Only those that have won the Master’s are invited to this exclusive event. Phil is choosing a Spanish cuisine of some kind as a way of honoring his golfing mentor, Seve Ballestros.


Ballestros won the Master’s in 1980, but he is unable to be present for the dinner tonight. He is fighting cancer himself, having been diagnosed with a brain tumor in 2008. Mickelson, who has always looked up to Ballestros said: I wanted to kind of honor him.”


In a world full of big egos, Mickelson’s kind gesture goes a long way. How often do we call out to have things done our way? We expect the sun to rise and set on our desires and expectations. It is my show. It is my deal. I earned the right to have it my way!


Mickelson really did earn the right to select tonight’s menu, but he chose to take the focus off of himself. I like Phil. I think he has a little class. I think we could all learn a few things from a man who has stood beside his wife and his mother as they have both fought breast cancer since 2009.  Cancer changes people in more ways than one...


In regard to Phi’s 2010 Master’s win, his wife Amy was quoted recently as saying: “"I still get emotional just talking about it.” And I just don’t blame you Amy. I like Phil. And I will be cheering him on this week as maneuvers his way through at Augusta National.  I  kind like the idea of Amy embracing her husband on Sunday after he wins again!

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