Monday, June 29, 2015

Those AMAZING Coincidences

by Kate Collins

Looking back over the years, I've come to realize that a lot of wonderful events and turning points in my life have seemed to happen through a series of coincidences. Meeting my husband, for example. There were so many coincidences that had to line up just right in order for us to meet, that I'm still blown away when I think about them.

When I bring up this subject, people usually have their own tale to share, so I'm hoping you will, too. But here's my latest one, just a tiny example, but it made me smile nevertheless.

The backstory: As a child of four and five, I spent week days at my grandmother's house while my mom and dad worked. Her house was warm and cozy and I loved sleeping in her big high bed with the windup clock ticking nearby. But it was grandma's garden that I loved most. And specifically, her raspberry patch.

My grandmother had grown up on a farm and had a vast knowledge of how to grow things. She had all kinds of fruit trees and a grape arbor, and all manner of vegetables, but the best place of all was the raspberry patch. While she weeded other areas, I would crouch low in the raspberry bushes and stuff my mouth full of the juicy, sweet fruit.  Every so often, Grandma would rise to stretch her back and call, "Are you eating all my berries?"

"No, Grandma," I would call, even as red juice ran down my chin and dripped onto my jumper.

She'd shake her head ruefully and call, "Well, leave some for me so I can make jam."

To this day, that memory is one of my favorites, one of the sweetest I'll ever recall, and I tell it often. In fact, I told it less than a month ago. So imagine this surprise. As I was shopping at a local health food store, I noticed a table with goat milk soaps and lotions on it. (In another coincidence) I had just  read how goat's milk soap is so healthy it can even clear dermatological conditions that other products don't help. Intrigued, I decided to try one.

There were about eight different aromas to choose from, so I began sniffing each one until I found scent I liked. The print on the wrapper was tiny and I didn't have my reading glasses with me, so I couldn't tell what the scent was until I got home and took a closer look. The label is below.

It says, "Grandma's Raspberry Patch." I started laughing and I swear I could feel my grandmother with me right at that moment, laughing, too. How great is that?

Now it's your turn. Tell me about a coincidence that happened in your life.


21 comments:

Mary Jane Maffini said...

This is a lovely story, Kate! There are many coincidences in my life, although none in my fiction, I hope. Once while visiting England, I made a last minute decision to visit Bath with my daughter. At we lined up for tea who lined up behind us but friends from Canada. We hadn't seen them for a while and we didn't know they were touring England. A half hour later, we would have missed them!

Diane LaBrie Leverson said...

I would say that your Grandmother is saying "hi" to you. Some of those things happen to me.. Like Fascination playing in a store when I am thinking of buying something I really don't need. (late husband's and my song) I think he is telling me not to buy but I don't listen. LOL I don't think all coincidences are like that but I seem to get some about my Father and his love of classical music. The one seeing your friends in England is quite a good one. I like when I am thinking about someone and they call or I see them. Life is strange at times.

Diane LaBrie Leverson said...

I would say that your Grandmother is saying "hi" to you. Some of those things happen to me.. Like Fascination playing in a store when I am thinking of buying something I really don't need. (late husband's and my song) I think he is telling me not to buy but I don't listen. LOL I don't think all coincidences are like that but I seem to get some about my Father and his love of classical music. The one seeing your friends in England is quite a good one. I like when I am thinking about someone and they call or I see them. Life is strange at times.

Karen in Ohio said...

I have a fairly long story of meeting my husband, then years later realizing I'd acquired something that was his, a couple of years before I met him. In fact, our relationship history has so many odd coincidences that if used in fiction it would be considered too pat.

Ruth Lyons Mazur said...

When my husband was stationed in Georgia, my brother-in-law was stationed at Paris Island and we spent time with him. Only a year later we we in Okinawa and he was in Vietnam Nam. He came to Okinawa and we were again were able to spend time with him. The chances of that happening were so slim, but it was so wonderful to spend time with him. We were reunited back home in late 1970. Thank you for the chance to win this giveaway. ruthmazur46@gmail.com - Ruth Lyons Mazur

emilia.m said...

how about that: before came to Canada, when I still was living and working back in my home country, I had 3 students from Canada (I was teaching at the University). As the school year ended I got invited to Canada for a visit (my Uncles insisted :) ). While visiting - I got invited to a wedding of one of my Uncle`s friends. And whom am I seeing there, dancing away? Why, one of my students of course :)
(BTW that was the visit I also met and fell in love with my Husband, but that is totally another string of coincidences, too many to call them that though, for me it will always be God's will :D )

Kate Collins said...

I love stories like that! Thanks for sharing MJ.

Kate Collins said...

Thanks for sharing, Diane. I truly believe that these tiny miracles are all around us if we pay attention.

Kate Collins said...

And don't you love that story? The old adage "truth is stranger than fiction" is absolutely right on!

Kate Collins said...

The chances were slim and yet it happened. That's a miracle.

Kate Collins said...

I believe that, too, Emilia. I believe wonderful things like meeting our soul mates are arranged in heaven. Thanks for sharing.

Rachelle21 said...

If feeling like you have been someplace before and finding it was described by your favorite author under a different name when you got home. Then finding out from the author too many years later that you did stay in the hotel she wrote about.

Kate Collins said...

That's awesome, Rachelle! Did you get goosebumps?

Anonymous said...

I have found that many coincidences involve that mysterious "six degrees of separation." In the 90's, a dear friend introduced me to her nursing colleague, "M" saying "she is also a sorority sister, you'll have a lot in common. And we did. When M mentioned she had lived in Banff, Alberta, I asked if she might have met my aunt, also a resident there. Of course, the answer was yes; they had all attended the same church and were good friends. So the chain came full circle and we remain close 20 years later.
Nancy R in Ottawa

Kate Collins said...

I'll bet the 6 degrees of separation operates in our lives a lot more than we realize -- or have the time to discover. Great post, Nancy.

Laurie Fancy said...

It's funny that you should talk about coincidences. My husband and I met in high school, but as I look back on it we had actually 'met' 3 times before that. Obviously it didn't "take'! We first met at grade 10 Grad (your Junior Prom?), I was dating his best friend... for a whole week! Then I met him again in Social Studies in grade 11, but he later dropped the course and decided to take it the following semester. Then my cousin told me about this guy that she thought was sooooooo cute and we were to peek in the gym for me to see what he looked like. I told her he looked dorky! (What did I know, right?) Then in late May, 1981, English 11 we sat 1 seat away from each other. I kept "talking over' my friend, Gwen, and after several classes of this she finally told me to "Get up!" She took my seat, I took hers and that afternoon my soon-to-be-boyfriend asked me out for coffee - May 28, 1980... and we've been together ever since. We celebrated out 35 date anniversary this year and our 29th wedding anniversary, too! I guess after finally getting us in the same class God decided He'd better do something or we'd NEVER get together! God works in mysterious AND persistent ways! :-)

Laurie Fancy said...

OOPS! That should be dated in May,1980. We graduated in 1981.

Kate Collins said...

I'm always amazed at how we are directed toward our path. So often people ignore those nudges but I'm a firm believer in listening to them, and that took me to wonderful places. Thanks for sharing your story, Laurie. It's a beauty.

Robert Giddings said...

Being born requires so many little coincidences coming together, it really is a miracle.

nightreader said...

This one is a 'corker' as my mother-in-law used to say. I hope I don't make it too long. I was born in Vancouver, BC and the farthest away I ever got was when my husband & I (coincidence 1) started looking for property out in what is called the Fraser Valley, neither knowing the other was doing the same thing. We bought a farm near Abbotsford, BC abt 20 miles from Vancouver. 9 years later we sold & moved back. In July 2006 when we retired we moved north to Smithers, BC to a house on 5 acres; our new next door neighbour came over with some cookies,mmmm & we started reminiscing. 1. We both went to the same South Vancouver elementary school...18 yrs apart she in the 1930s, me in the 1940s, South Van was sparsely settled at that time. 2. We both had the same favorite teacher, our grade 5 teacher & librarian, young when Pen had her, white-haired when I had her; 3. Pen lived on 56th Ave. & I lived on 58th. Ave.; 4. We both went to the same Jr. High School, but she moved to Deep Cove in North Vancouver after one year, I graduated from that Jr./Sr. High School. 5. In the early 60s we moved to North Vancouver. I was now married and expecting our 2nd child. 3 yrs. later the 3rd was born. During that time we occasionally had horses go by with teen-aged girls riding them. We lived on a short street that began with Burrill Rd. and ended one block later at Langworthy. Pen & her family, with horses! & 3 teen-aged girls lived at the opposite end of Burrill Rd. 5. This is when we bought the farm; they bought a ranch in the Interior. 6. At times her husband worked as a longshoreman; my husband worked briefly as a longshoreman, but I worked for a few years at the longshore hall pay office, and knew some of the same people and her husband knew. 7. After moving to Smithers, they often vacationed in the Yukon; in 1979 I drove my Grandma up to the Yukon and all around it because when she was a child she lived from 1901-1908 in the Yukon. So, this is my barrage of coincidences. I've probably even missed some, such as I became a promoter for bear aware & orphaned bears in Smithers, and she actually rowed out on the Anahim Lake to rescue what she thought was a dog, and found a drowning young bear, dragged it in, brought it home & tried to give it some milk. I'm holding my breath that this isn't too long but it's a story I never get tired of, it just spills out. (No, unfortunately the bear was too far gone to save.)

Kate Collins said...

Wow! That really is a corker!! I wish everyone kept track of coincidences like you did. We'd be amazed by how often they happen. Lots of little miracles all the time.