Have you ever reflected on something that happened in childhood, something so minor it’s miraculous you even remember it? And then you realize that whatever that experience was is actually a little window revealing exactly who you are now?
I’ve had that experience from an ordinary day chopping an apple.
It was Thanksgiving, I was 10 or 11 years old and I was cutting apples for the apple pie. As I sliced each apple, I really studied it and felt its weight in my hand. I wondered about the tree it came from and where its brother and sister apples went.
This whole line of thinking when observing fruits and vegetables was very familiar to me. I’d done it as long as I could remember. (I did it with animals too which is why I stopped eating them as a kid.)
On that day, instead of keeping the ruminations about the apple inside my own head like I usually did, I turned to my dad and said, “Do you ever think about apples like this one? Where did it come from? What does the tree look like? How many other trees are around this apple’s tree? Where are all the other apples that grew right next to it?”
I don’t remember what Dad said back, but I do remember that later on that day I overheard another adult who had been the kitchen say to my father, “You know what Blaine said? All that stuff about the apple? That’s not normal for a kid her age.”
They didn’t know I was around the corner and could hear them.
I couldn’t have been more shocked. Not normal?!? I thought about that stuff all the time… Weird. Am I the only one who thinks this way?
Decades later, I learned about spirituality and started gleaning understanding that I’ve always felt connected to plants and animals and living things. From a spiritual perspective it’s the direction we want to go as we feel unity, relationship and love for all creation. Turns out, I’ve always been somewhat spiritual.
Often, I get pulled away from that version of myself though. In the adult world of bills, to-do lists, errands, chores and responsibilities, I can chomp down an apple without a second thought and it bothers me later when I realize what I did.
Earlier this week, I sent a newsletter about being more mindful and I think a lovely way to do it is with summer fruit. Yesterday, I ate the most perfect peach from right here in Colorado. Of all the things I did yesterday, my favorite was eating this peach.
It was Earth’s perfection, resting right there in my hand, then in my body nourishing and energizing me. I ate it as slowly as I could, savoring each moment I had with it.
It reminded me of that one Thanksgiving and the apple. How was I so connected to Earth’s gifts then and I can so easily disregard them now?
When I’m 100% in appreciation of the peach, I’m 100% in appreciation of my life. At that moment, there’s nothing wrong and I just have gratitude.
It’s my challenge for you this week – pick a summer fruit and enjoy every moment of consuming it. Practice mindfully eating your fruit: eat it slowly, savor the whole experience. Ponder where the fruit came from and the farmer who harvested it. Give it thanks for nourishing you. Be fully engaged.
If you have time, please email me back and let me know how mindfully eating this fruit felt for you. I hope you find peace and presence as much as I do.