This beautiful short story is something i believe most people can learn something from. We often here the saying, "when life hands you lemons, make lemonade", it is a saying common used to tell people to be or become adaptable to life and the circumstances that befall us. In this short story we read once again how important it is to be flexible and adaptable in life.
A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed that as one problem was solved a new one arose.
Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Soon the pots came to a boil. In the first she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs, and in the last she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil, without saying a word.
In about 20 minutes she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them into a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed t in a bowl.
Turning to her daughter, she asked, ‘tell me, what you see ?’
‘Carrots, eggs, and coffee,’ she replied
Her mother brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they were soft. The mother then asked the daughter to take and egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg. Finally, the mother asked the daughter to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled as she tasted its rich aroma
The daughter then asked ‘what does it mean, mother?’
Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity… boiling water. Each reacted differently.
The carrot went in strong, hard, and unrelenting. However, after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak. The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior, but after sitting through the boiling water its insides became hardened. The ground coffee beans were unique however - after they were in boiling water, they changed the water.
‘Which are you?’ she asked her daughter. ‘When adversity and obstacles knock on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?’