A carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?


Once upon a time a young woman complained to her grandmother that her life was miserable and that she didn’t know how she was going to make it. She was tired of fighting and struggling all the time. It seemed just as one problem was solved, another one soon followed. Her grandmother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire.

Once the three pots began to boil, she placed carrots in one pot, eggs in the second pot and ground coffee beans in the third pot. She then let them sit and boil, without saying a word to her granddaughter. The granddaughter, moaned and impatiently waited, wondering what she was doing. After twenty minutes she turned off the burners. She took the carrots out of the pot and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. She then ladled the coffee out and placed it in a cup.

Turning to her, she asked. “Granddaughter, what do you see?” “Carrots, eggs and coffee,” she hastily replied.

“Look closer”, she said, “and touch the carrots.” She did and noted that they were soft.

She then asked her to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg.

Finally, she asked her to sip the coffee. Its rich aroma brought a smile to her face.

“Grandmother, what does this mean?” she asked.

She then explained that the carrots, the eggs and coffee beans had each faced the same adversity-the boiling water. However, each one reacted differently. The carrot went in strong, hard and unrelenting, but in boiling water, it became soft and weak. The egg was fragile, with the thin outer shell protecting its liquid interior until it was put in the boiling water. Then the inside of the egg became hard. However, the ground coffee beans were unique. After they were exposed to the boiling water, they changed the water and created something new.

“Which one are you?” she asked her granddaughter. “When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?”

When I quit smoking I was the carrot. I was soft and vulnerable, I felt weak and came close to relapse several times.

Then I made up my mind and became hard-headed, similar to the egg and I have to admit that there were days when plain willpower kept me going.

Now I see myself as being the coffee. I created something new for me, I am a non-smoker and I adjusted!

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17 thoughts on “A carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?

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