When I was growing up as a child, there was only one type of Watermelon — the kind that has seeds. Today, my kids only know of the seedless variety.
It seems everything today can be engineered, manufactured, and produced to make life easier; but does it really in the long run?
Standing there in the grocery store I thought about all bonus material I might be missing by always taking the easy road and buying the seedless watermelon. Then I considered what a disservice I was doing for my kids! I reached over and grabbed the biggest watermelon from the overflowing basket of the seeded variety. Today — I thought — we are going to learn to eat around the Watermelon seeds.
It’s the truth, you know. Anytime life gets tough, we pull out our maps and find a different way, saying to ourselves, “Forget about going through the muck, I’m out of here”. We do this to ourselves, and we’re passing it down to another generation. As helicopter moms and paranoid dads, we are killing our kids' instincts for survival. We are simply buying their way around the seeds, sparing them any unnecessary hassles life might throw their way. We argue with their teachers over bad grades, we yank them out of schools when the going gets tough, and advise them to Google anything that stumps them. What happened to the days of adapting to different teaching styles, getting banged up on the playground, learning critical thinking skills — eating around the Watermelon seeds?
I, for one, am guilty. I’ve done all these things. I’ve over-achieved in my role of being involved, jumping in and solving problems, defending at all costs. And what have my kids learned as a result? They’ve learned how to eat a seedless watermelon — skirt the issues. Rely on others. Ask someone else for the answers.
At a very young age, I learned how to be an independent thinker. I was forced to eat my way around the watermelon seeds of life — and I am forever grateful for those opportunities and the lessons I learned. Today’s society has become too lazy, too defensive, too focused on perfection. My suggestion? Screw things up every once in a while!!! Who cares if you make a mistake? At least you tried… you took a step… you didn’t let fear freeze you into inaction. I think it’s time we all dig in, get dirty, and do the hard work again. It's in those moments that the LIGHT truly does shine for us.
Since that day in the grocery store, I’ve been buying seeded watermelons all summer long. We have enjoyed the sweetest, juiciest, ripest fruits as a result. Those seeds really do make the watermelon sweeter. Similarly, I think life is sweeter, too, when we eat around the seeds along the way.
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