Have you ever wanted something a little bit out of your reach? Something you didn’t quite have control over?
When I was about ten years old, I traveled to Florida for the first time to visit elder neighbors who migrated there from our northern Pennsylvania area in wintertime. As a redhead with freckles, I can’t say I’ve ever been excited about tropical heat and sunscreen, but I’ve learned to fake my way through poolside and ocean enjoyments by soaking in the sights. Seagulls in the air, seashells in the sand, and coconuts in the palm trees always caught my eye. Seagulls came and went. Seashells could always be found. But the coconuts would never fall. I mean, coconuts always fell from palm trees in movies and on TV, right?
The whole trip, I was full of wishful thinking for just one little coconut to fall from a poolside palm tree. Every morning I woke up and walked down to the pool to check and see if the tree left me a present overnight. And every morning, they remained where they were…
…Until the morning I left. I went to check the tree one last time, and there on the ground I found one small coconut for the keeping.
I like to think that my wishful thinking had some power to it. As silly as it sounds, I really believed that tree would gift me a coconut before I left.
In adulthood, a lesson often granted to you in circumstances out of your control is to do what is only in your control. Be a seashell hunter—comb the sand, look at low tide, dig. But I just want to offer a kind and gentle reminder that there is nothing wrong with a little wishful thinking, no matter the age. You never know when a coconut may fall for you.