Deck the halls, break out the tassles, and confetti, we are officially in the swing of mango season. Amidst the sting of the pandemic, social distancing and zoomania, there is this nagging feeling that so much has been lost. Lost and not missing. Lost as in, snatched away: Lost graduation, lost time, and sadly lost lives. The list is endless. Yet many mangolicious folks have found solace through unyielding prayers, meditation, music, cooking, (lots of cooking) home renovations, more cooking or for the “night owls,” Netflix bingeing. For a select bunch, we have found solace and a familar place of refuge in the joy of mango season.
Despite ‘Rona’s unwanted disruption, and her unyielding habbit of taking, mango season’s synchronized arrival is off limits. This year’s season particularly serves as a reminder that nature and the things we cherish can and will bounce back. Its the aromatic nostalgic smell, the sight, the sweetness that draws us in and graciously gives back. Not even Coronavirus can distrupt the mighty mango season. So to all the scrooges out there who have lost their mango mojo… feeling paralyzed by the pandemic, slumped over, zoomed out and locked in with uncertainty about the road ahead..this post is dedicated to you.
With the growing concerns about our health, and the need for a immune system boost, every bite of a sweet Julie, Mango Kon, Alphonse or Nam Doc mango, feels like a dose of heaven’s Emergen-C. The nutritional benefits of mangoes are off the charts. Mangoes are a super fruit and an excellent source of vitamins A and C, a good source of fiber and contains vitamin B-6 (11% of the daily recommended intake) which promotes the production of serotonin, a hormone that elevates your mood. Mangoes are not just delicious, I’m sure you would agree its a natural stimuli, nature’s stimulus package.
Well if that was not enough, mangoes are also a great source of beta-carotene, and contains powerful antioxidants that have the capability of neutralizing free radicals that prevent premature aging. That’s right! Mangoes have anti-aging properties, so get your mango-licious consumption on. Yesssss! A toast is in order for any food that elevates your health, mood, vitality, brings out your natural beauty, keeps you young and makes you feel oh so fab-u-lous! TOAST!
Mixed into the spotlight on the 2020 mango season is the age old question: How do we find joy and maintain a sense of hope in the midst of a crisis? In the pre-Covid19, non socially distant era, a place of solace for me was enjoying a good mango under a tree while sharing the company of family and good friends. We are in a new normal so we won’t all be meeting up under the family tree this season. Nonetheless all is not lost. With a mango in hand, we will take one bite and face this crisis one day at a time.
Someone recently reminded me that “a crisis is a terrible thing to waste.” Despite our remote state, masking, or limited mobility, its still a great time to shift our paradigm, and explore new ideas, opportunities and of course explore the varied possibilities of mangoes! Use the occasion to teach your kids about the benefits of mangoes or share your funny childhood stories of climbing mango trees in the neighbor’s yard.
Below i’ll share my stimulus package of mango related resources that will hopefully re-ignite your “mango mojo” or challenge you to explore new and exciting ways to enjoy mango recipes, rhythms, or new remedies during this memorable mango season:
Sharing a great recipe from my go to book on mangoes: The Great Mango Book by Chef Allen Susser. In this clip Allen demonstrates how to make a delish mango wrap while cooking with your kids:
The Mango has a plethora of health benefits but did you know mango leaves also have medicinal properties that can help alleviate things like kidney stones, reducing inflammation, weight loss, build the body’s immunity against viral infection and even be used for improving dental health? Check out this informative video on the benefits of mango leaves.
What better way to get into the mango mood than with music! Feel free to create your first Tik Tok video as you break out in a dance and work up a sweat to this catchy mango song by General Zooz or a jazzy tune by Black Mango.
Reflections from the Mango Lady:
This current season is indeed historic, yet it offers abundant time for reflection, sharing and learning. Leaving you with my 2020 mango season take away:
1. Get a grip on reality. Recognize crisis as being inevitable. Its useless exhausting time, thought and energy worrying about things we cannot change. This current crisis may not be a quckie. Wishing it away, denying its happening or clicking your heels will not change a thing. Prepare for the long haul. Acknowledge it is here and determine how to best live through it by God’s grace.
2. Find Refuge. Even in the midst of crisis we can find places of refuge. I find peace in knowing God is still in control. There is a text in scripture that states, “weeping endures for a time but joy comes in the morning.” Psalm 30: 5 Even weeping has its season. We find refuge in knowing that morning is sure to come. There is a lot we have all lost, but so much we still have to gain.
3. “Crisis is a terrible thing to waste” – Harry C. Resilent folks often use crisis as a catapult to achieve greater things and climb to higher heights. Write that book, blog about your leadership experience, start that catering business, release your inner artist! No excuse. Go for it.
4. Embrace the Mangolicious life. Its recognizing life has bitter and sweet seasons. Yet its a fierce resolve never to give up, accept defeat or play victim in the face of failure. The Mangolicious life is a life of resilence, and learning to adapt to change. Humans are designed to bounce back. And we will.
5. Be thankful and affrim others in the crisis. Remember to encourage the first responders, nurses, police, janitors, cleaning crew, and politicians making difficult life impacting decisions. Pray for critical care workers who toil and put their own lives at risk daily. Take time to value others amidst the crisis. They need to hear a thank you every now and then. Be thankful for what’s right in your life when so much more could go wrong.
Despite these unprecedented times, I recognize we are all part of one of the most memorable periods in earth’s history. However, 2020 is not over just yet. I believe there are still some amazing things that await us down the road. There are many more rivers to cross, new discoveries to be made and important lessons still yet to learn. Until then, I hope this post has rekindled your joy for mango season and added a smile to your day.
Take that Covid-19!
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