When life gives you lemons, it doesn’t hand you the rest of the ingredients in order to make that famous ‘lemonade,’ the positive spin on the otherwise crappy circumstances. What about the water? Do life’s lemons also come with the sugar to give this situation sweeter perspective? Ice? This is why the lesson is so important: it is your job to finish the recipe. In my experience, there is so much you can learn if you really apply yourself to the process of gathering the rest of the ingredients, peeling it all apart step by step.
First, check out the lemons. These lemons are here. Life will never demand that you turn them into a delicious drink, but sour tasting fruit that will eventually grow moldy on your counter won’t be very useful, so why not make something with them? Experience does not have preference. Horrible things happen to good people while cheats and liars get away with gold, and vice versa. This process will most likely never change, but it is your attitude toward this norm, this lemon distribution, if you will, that determines your own growth.
Next, cut up and juice your lemons. This is probably the most painful part, when the juice squirts out and finds its way into cuts you forgot you had, perhaps shoots straight up into your eye blinding you temporarily from further progress. An example might clear things up: you get rear-ended on the freeway on your way to work. Looking at the lemons would be getting out of your car and assessing the damage. Cutting open the lemons and juicing them would be acknowledging the fact that your current insurance won’t cover all the damage and necessary repairs are way beyond your financial means. That squeezing anxiety? That’s lemon juice.
Now, find some water. This part is the most fulfilling and important part of the recipe, for without the water all you would have is a concentrated form of a bitter reality with no expansion of understanding. It is possible to dilute our discontent by dispersing the intensity of the taste evenly. Coming to peace with what happened (the situation) and content with what is (your reaction to it) is a satisfying combination . Find the right mixture for you.
Finally, the sugar and the ice. The end product is as good as you want to make it: Since your car was wrecked, you have to borrow your mom’s, dropping it off at the end of every day. You don’t spend nearly enough time with her, and it’s been nice hanging out again. Not only is the drink completely satisfying and sweet, but you’re walking away with a new recipe, the ingredients of which are completely in your possession. Some people can concoct a fabulous lemonade, while others have yet to understand the beautiful potential of the lemon.