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Think about a ripe peach – beautiful color, delicious sweet and peachy smell, enticing, inviting. Take a deep breath in through your nose. You can almost imagine it, can’t you? Ever been peach picking in the Texas Hill Country in the summer? OMG, yum! Peaches almost beckon you to take a bite, I’d consider peaches to be the most inviting fruit of all, with their fuzzy skin and sweet nectar. You bite it and enjoy the juicy sweet flesh and the juice drips down your hands. The smell, the taste, it quenches your thirst and satisfies your appetite at the same time. The all of a sudden, BOOM!! You hit the hard stone in the center. Damn. You then try to get all the little parts of the peach out of the pits in the stone. It gets stuck in your teeth now, the happy moments are now a pain in the ass. Wishing, instead of the stone, there was more of the juicy, peachy yumminess that you can easily eat. Even freestone peaches, the ones you can cut into and tear in half, the stone comes loose with little effort but the sweet peachy fruit comes to a screeching halt when you hit that hard center.

Then there is a coconut. A coconut is pretty ugly, and hard. You need a hard knife or a hammer and chisel to get into one. Some of them are even brown and round, with hair on them. Then there are the big green ones in Mexico. I’ve never really been a fan of them, but once you get past the hard, tough exterior, there is refreshing and super-hydrating milk inside, and the fruit is pretty sweet, especially if it’s toasted, which adds another step, but one that is well worth it. You gotta work harder to get to the inside of a coconut than you do a peach, and it takes more time, effort, and patience.

People can be like peaches and coconuts.

Ever date a peach? It’s sweet smelling and delightful. Initially, it seems like this is the most perfect person you’ve ever met. The sex is bomb, they present themselves as the ultimate partner, and you’re beyond blissed out. Poetry, flowers, presents, sweet loving texts, it’s amazing – and then BOOM!!! You ask them about something that slams the gates down on all that yummy, juicy happiness, and they shut you out. You’ve reached the stone. You can toss it away, or maybe you can plant it, water it, love it, be patient and it will soften, open, and grow. Maybe.

Coconuts take work to break though that hard exterior, if they are noticed at all. Coconuts will eventually let you in, and when they do, they are super thirst quenching and worth the work. You never know with a coconut. But give a coconut a little time, move slowly and establish trust. They have a hard exterior for a reason. Maybe they have been hurt before. Maybe they just need someone to listen to them, and they will open up to you.

Think about yourself. Are you a peach or a coconut? If someone reaches your stone, will you open up? Will you let someone pierce through your hard shell? Are you all hearts and flowers until someone touches on a subject you don’t want to talk about, or reaches a certain level and you shut down, stop communicating, and stop the relationship? Can you get past the superficial conversations, and go deeper? Do you want true connection? True intimacy? Can you allow someone in without fear of rejection? Can you be vulnerable with someone once trust is established? Will you allow someone to see all your bruises and scars, and realize that some people see them as beautiful? What if you get hurt? But what if you don’t.

There are all kinds of fruit: bananas, strawberries, blueberries, and my favorite, raspberries. You can see the beauty and fragility of all of these. You can find the good qualities, and probably some qualities to bitch about. Take bananas, for instance. They’re pretty economical. They don’t need to be refrigerated and they’re easy to grab on the go. But bananas seem to go brown fast and look ugly and attract fruit flies. But I love me some banana bread. Think about the people in your life. Are there some things that are awesome about them, that really make them essential? You love being around them and there are also some qualities you’d change. Sometimes you get a shitty pack of raspberries. They look good from the top in the store, but you go to rinse them, and there are some moldy ones. They’re still my favorite, though. And sometimes, you can get one that blows your freakin’ mind! So keep on tastin’! (wink wink)

Amy Ramsey

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