Confession time: I’m a stalker and a gawker. Some people are like this with dogs. My husband does this with old cars and boats. The thing I stalk and gawk at? Fruit trees. I can tell you where every fruit tree is on the drive to school. The sight of fruit laying on the ground decomposing makes my heart ache. If only someone had picked it and made it into something delicious to be immediately enjoyed, or packed into jars, cooked, and carefully placed on shelves to enjoy in the cold of winter. When I see fruit on the ground, I see missed potential. I would be lying if I told you that I hadn’t considered knocking on the doors of those houses with beautiful trees and being that crazy lady who asks if I can IOU them a pie in return.
If you’ve been following along with the blog, you know we just moved to a more rural community. And I did the thing that any good millennial would; I joined the community information Facebook page. I was welcomed in only after answering questions about where I lived, why I wanted to be a part of the group, and agreeing to abide by the rules of not posting about buying or selling things because “there are other pages already for that.” The idea of asking if anyone had spare fruit that I could come grab cropped up, but I pushed the idea down for a few days out of fear that it might break those rules. But, I rationalized, I’m not asking to buy or sell anything. I just want their potential-filled, amazing fruit to turn into something spectacular. I don’t care if I have to cut around worm holes or give it some TLC. I can’t stand to see it rot on the ground.
And so, I posted asking about unused fruit and offering to come get it…. And guess what, I didn’t get told I broke the rules, and in fact, had three offers to go get fruit! So last week, I found myself going down a gravel road to a beautifully landscaped yard where a fantastic retiree showed me the grove of fruit trees she planted 13 years ago after losing her husband. Then, she lovingly helped us fill boxes and baskets with apples, pears and Italian prunes from her trees. She shared stories, her love and talent for art, and sent us home with another bag of dried apples she had already made and an invitation to come back in a few weeks when her last tree with branches drooping in the heaviness of fruit would be ready. My heart was bubbling full as I hugged her goodbye and thanked her for her generosity.
Today, I tackled sauce making, starting with cutting out holes or rotting cores of fruit. And as I did this, rarely did I notice the flaws. I was in awe of the crispness of the apples, the roundness of the pears, and the thought of how wonderful apple/pear sauce would taste as winter swirls around us in a few months (please winter, wait a few months, okay?!). 20 jars of sauce and a few hours later, I smiled with satisfaction and contentment. Potential had been realized.
Our human nature is often to focus on those worm holes and rotting cores in ourselves and others. I’m a rule follower, and thinking that I might get chastised if my post didn’t fit the rules held me back until I realized that the worse that could happen was a “stop it.”
Continuing on that theme of changing perspectives, what if you focused on your strengths and used them to their full potential? What amazingness could you unleash? Not sure? Maybe it’s time for a complimentary sample coaching session. Click get in touch, and let’s find fifteen minutes to discover what is possible in your life.