Serendipity

“Serendipity”—I remember using the word in conversation with my son, Eddie, when he was in third or fourth grade. He’s always loved words and he loved the way “serendipity” sounded; he loved the meaning even more. “It’s true, Mommy. Lots of things happen by fortunate chance. Like how come we found our cat right when Amy was leaving for college? I miss my sister, but now I have a cat!”

I love the idea of fortunate chance. Was it serendipity that I was housed off campus my junior year, where I met Jaque, who introduced me to Joe, who became my husband and Eddie’s father? Was it serendipity that my friend and co-author, Lynne Dorfman, attended the NWP summer writing institute the same year that I did? That we bonded over free writes and response groups and afternoon socials? How about the fortunate chance that brought my father to the mountain village where he met my mother between the end of the Great War and his mustering out of the army?

Clearly, much of what happens in life is the result of serendipity; happy accidents. “Man plans, God laughs.” Maybe serendipity is His way of saying, “Gotcha!”  I’ve come to realize that there is no good outcome to be had by engaging in worry about the future (even in these very trying political times). Though we can’t sit idly by and wait for chance to make decisions for us, we can learn to appreciate the accidents.

 

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10 thoughts on “Serendipity

  1. Serendipity seems like a good word as I move into parenting two teenage boys — I can’t engage in worry – rather I will be on the lookout for fortunate chance! Love this word – have never thought about it much…. but I connect to it more than fate for some reason. I will have to think about it some more. Thanks
    Clare

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I too love the sound of the word serendipity! It’s unique, it’s fun, it’s perfect! I’m a true believer in “happy accidents” and couldn’t agree with you more that nothing good comes out of engaging in worry. Great post, Diane!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Love the word, Diane, and I agree. We can appreciate “happy accidents.” I actually think they are fairly frequent, if we take the time to notice them and think about their impact on our lives. A great word that is fun to say, fun to think about, and I believe, very positive. I do believe we are destined to meet people, be there at a certain time – an opportunity, really, if we recognize the happy accident – even if it takes us some time to do so!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I also love that word, Diane! And I forget who said it – was it Mark Twain? That as writers, you can use serendipity [coincidence] to get your characters into tangles, but you can’t use it to get them out of them… that’s the hard work maybe of writing [and living!]

    Liked by 1 person

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