Amanda Blumenherst, 26, will play the remainder of this season and then take some time off to be closer to her husband, Nate Freiman, a rookie first baseman for the Oakland A’s. LPGA.com caught up with Blumenherst for a quick Q&A.
Q: How has married life been? And how did you juggle two professional sports schedules?
Blumenherst: Married life is wonderful; I have never been happier. Marriage definitely suits us. The toughest part has been the amount of time we have had to spend apart due to our busy travel schedules. Texting, phone calls, emailing and google chatting have been a big help in keeping us connected. Over the past several years I would spend my off weeks traveling to wherever Nate was playing to try to see him as much as possible, but because he cannot leave to be with me, we would still go five to six weeks without seeing each other. However, by both being professional athletes, we understand the craziness of our schedules and we made it work.
Q. When did you know that you wanted to take a break from professional golf?
Blumenherst: At the beginning of this year Nate and I talked about the possibility of me slowing down after this season, and around May and June I started really considering it and praying about it. As the months progressed, it became more and more difficult for me to leave Nate for weeks at a time. I felt like I was missing out on so much, and when I was at a tournament, my heart wasn't one hundred percent in it, which is a feeling that I hate (I want to be completely present and focused at every tournament). I am a perfectionist and I want to give whatever I am doing my best effort, and I was feeling that I wasn't achieving this with either my career or family. At the beginning of August it became clear to me that it was time to take a break and start a new chapter of my life.
Q. What was the response from everyone when they found out?
Blumenherst: I was amazed at the response. Players, caddies, rules officials, and LPGA staff were coming up to me on the putting green or driving range, giving me a hug and telling me that they were so happy for me, congratulating me and saying that they were going to miss me. It was so overwhelming and truly touched my heart.
Q. What do you feel is your career highlight?
Blumenherst: Probably winning both stages of Q-school would be my career highlight. And finishing second in the Mojo Six in Jamaica. I love matchplay and that event.
Q. What will you miss the most about not being on Tour?
Blumenherst: I will miss my friends on Tour the most. I have been so blessed to have developed such amazing friendships over the years and it will be strange and sad not to see them consistently next year.
Q. Do you have any plans with how you’ll fill your time?
Blumenherst: I am planning on playing in as many pro-ams, corporate outings, and charity events as possible next year, and planning on watching a lot of baseball. I have never had a problem staying busy, so I am sure that I will find plenty of ways to fill my time.
Q. Any thoughts about returning one day?
Blumenherst: They say that the only certain thing in life is that life is uncertain, so I won't make a sweeping declaration that I will never return, nor can I say that I will play in ten events next year. Only time will time.