Life Lessons: You Always Get What You Give

The lessons of a Lemonade Stand

The lessons of a Lemonade Stand

On this first day of December and after a great Thanksgiving Holiday I hope I can keep this peaceful feeling I am having throughout the rest of my life.

The reason I am in an extra sensitive mood is I just came back from my Aunt Jenny’s funeral. And what a wonderful 85 years she lived.

One of the greatest points of inspiration that came to me through the funeral service is how her 6 adult children felt that they were their “momma’s” favorite child.

And I must admit I feel like I am her favorite nephew. You see it was something like this; she would stop whatever she was doing, look you in the eye, listen closely, and then respond with some positive words about having more faith in yourself or in God. She always had a calming voice and a pleasant smile that would cause you to know you were the most important thing at that very moment.

As a youth, it was a common practice in my mother’s family to pass around the cousins in the summer months to get to know each other and to learn about life through others life experiences.

On one of my stays my aunt talked me into setting up a lemonade stand in front of the house. Now I have to tell you this was something that never happened where I grew up, mainly because none of the 283 people in the whole town would come to my house clear on the outskirts of town just to buy a glass of lemonade.

But in my best attitude and with a lot of hours sitting on the street I finally sold some lemonade to neighbors that were just walking by. Now that I am older I know that they were just helping out some kid on the street but that day really meant a lot to my growth and personal development.

Aunt Jenny recommended that I not spend the money but to save it and buy some more lemons and sugar and she would help me again set up the stand for more sales. But my need to spend the money got the better of me and I bought a large banana ICE at the corner 7-11 convenience store.

But Aunt Jenny did not tone down her spirits, and she again stocked my lemonade stand with lemons, sugar, and ice. She was so determined that I could come into my own at the age of 10 that she even sat out there for what seemed like hours, coaching me to bark out the message of cold fresh lemonade to every one that passed buy.

But the real lesson of selling lemonade turned into a life time memory. Aunt Jenny went in the house and left me to sell all the lemonade. I was barking out to all passer bys fresh cold lemonade and I make it while you wait.

Two boys that were much bigger than myself stopped across the street making fun of me and mocking every word. After a few remarks I yelled buy some lemonade or move on. Their remarks back was I’ll shoot you with this bb gun if you don’t shut up. Well I jumped up and put my hands on my hips and said you couldn’t shoot me if you tried.

The next thing I knew was I was running into Aunt Jenny hoping she could relive the pain. As I ran in the house screaming,” I’ve been shot,” she calmly knelt down looking at the blood coming out of a small hole on my stomach and as she pinched the spot like a pimple out came the bb.

And her shocking words to me were what did you do to deserve that.

Boy I thought that those boys should go to jail for the rest of their life but all she said is what did you do to deserve that. Now that was a new frame of reference and I must admit a good one.

Then she started to explain how some people simply have sad lives and take it out on others and those that look for the good in others usually can find it. And when you help them find the good in themselves they become your friend and not an enemy.

You always get what you give and in this case if I would have offered a free lemonade they would have moved on without any conflict and my suffering would have not happened and I would have gained another good customer.

You always get what you give and the givers always get the most by becoming a favorite friend like Aunt Jenny. Listening with real intent to become the winner in the game of life.

You’re Life Strategist

Jeff D. Allen

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Posted under: General Thoughts

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