On My Mind: Kiwis and Grapes

In my life, I am trying to adopt an attitude of “Don’t knock it until you try it.” It has always been easy for me to dismiss an idea as ridiculous or unworthy of my time and attention, especially if it fails to fit into my frame of thinking or does not seem to make sense at first—some of you may be able to relate.

I have learned that when I make such quick judgments, my mind is instantly slammed shut by preconceived opinions, and, when this open-mindedness is lost, I know that I keep myself from experiences that can enrich my life.

Let me give an example…

yogurtNot long ago, I went to get some frozen yogurt with my cousin-in-law. The yogurt place we went to was revolutionary to me; you serve up the amount of yogurt in which ever flavor you’d like, then you have the choice of toppings to suit your craving palette. Once you pile on toppings and sauces to your heart’s content, you place it on a scale and they charge you by the ounce. What a fun concept!

Because I was new to this scene, my cousin-in-law went first…setting a perfect example. As I was planning my concoction, I watched my cousin-in-law put kiwis and grapes on hers. My instant thought…”Grapes and kiwis on yogurt? Who would ever think of putting grapes and kiwis on yogurt?” It seemed so unusual and far from delicious to me and I was convinced that surely I was making the best and safest choice: raspberries and strawberries. Can you say “mouthwateringly delicious?” I can!!

As I thought about my experience with my cousin-in-law, I realized that I was knocking something before I tried it! A few weeks later, in my desire to be more open-minded, I decided to march down to the same yogurt shop and try my cousin’s combination. What did I learn? I learned that grapes and kiwis on yogurt are not disgusting. I must admit that I quite enjoyed the crunching texture of the kiwi seeds while the firm grapes added a nice crisp flavor. The zing of both fruits brought out the tang of the yogurt, and it was quite delicious. I tried something new and I found that it was indeed something that could enrich my life. .

Where might I be going with this thought? Well, infertility can be plain miserable. Disappointments lurk around each corner and when they sneak up on you, they seem to grasp on and hang around for a long time. Each of us can probably admit that on some days, it feels really good to wallow in misery and pain, but most days, we wish that we could find a way to leave the pain behind.

When we see a list of coping strategies (or someone suggests an idea to us), it is easy to go through the list and cross off the ones that sound like they will not work, just because we have a preconceived notion that they surely cannot. May I suggest that instead of immediately crossing them off the list, assured that our plan is the best and most effective, that we try them? Within each strategy or idea lies the potential to open our lives to something new and different, just like kiwis and grapes. The unexpected sweetness might just remove the pain and disappointment enough that we can see light and hope again. Someone recently told me that you should try something three times before you determine its level of success or failure. That theory can work in this situation as well.

So, consider these two new ideas I am sharing with you:

  1. Don’t knock something before you try it.
  2. Try it three times…then judge its effectiveness.

Oh, how I love my yogurt topped with raspberries and strawberries, but how grateful I am that I stepped beyond my comfort zone to try something new and different! Likewise, as I have stepped out of my comfort zone and tried some of those things I thought were cliché or thought would never soothe my wounded soul, the effort I made has brought new energy and light. The pains and disappointments will always be there, but the sorrow no longer immobilizes me.

23 November 2009

For ideas for coping or living beyond infertility, click here.

Disclaimer: Please don’t think that I condone trying everything before you make a judgment about it. Clearly, there are some things we should judge as wrong or improper and then stay away from them. Of course we should always choose those things that “inviteth and enticeth [us] to do good continually;…to love God, and to serve him” (Moroni 7:13). I simply want to encourage you be open to trying things that may you may normally dismiss as silly, unusual, or unhelpful. Good luck!!

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