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Friday, July 22, 2011

Fate, God or Coincidence?

Fate, God or Coincidence?
It was one of those occurrences that seem all the more peculiar with the passage of time and reflection.  My wife and I were headed home on a Sunday evening with our two year old son fast asleep in the back seat.  We had spent a wonderful day at a backyard barbeque with friends, a day of fun in the sun that had left us all exhausted.  I could think of nothing better than a hot shower and eight hours of sleep.
                Our route home took us within a couple of miles of the Bloomington General Hospital.
 “Why don’t we stop by and see your mother,” I asked through a yawn. 
Even now I have no explanation why I would have suggested this, especially given our state of mind.  My mother-in-law had been working part-time as an RN for the hospital for the past six years.  We had never visited her on a shift— it simply wasn’t something we considered.  I’m not even sure it was acceptable.  Moreover, we had been getting together in some form or fashion nearly every week of our four year marriage.  There was no feeling of need or obligation to visit the hospital that day.
When we look back, the memory of how we went from suggestion to visitation is hazy at best.  We found ourselves behind the closed doors of the west wing elevator when an unexpected calm came over me.  I typically can not stand the hospitals; the smells; the gloom; the death—not my cup of tea.  But this day was different somehow.  I was overcome with a feeling of unfamiliar expectancy.
We spotted my mother-in-law almost instantly as the elevator doors opened.  As usual, she offered us only a passing smile before focusing all of her attention on her beloved grandson.
Now here’s where a simple occurrence becomes extraordinary.  The elevator doors open behind us and out walks Dr. Dina Davis.  A brief background is necessary here;
I married my wife well-knowing that we may never be able to have children of our own.  We heard cutting words like barren and infertile from medical professionals.  Some gave us a remote chance still others quickly moved the conversation to adoption.  My deep love for my wife out-weighed all other issues at hand.  We married and never looked back—then came Dr. Davis.  
My wife told me of new methods and medicines that a certain Dr. Davis was advocating. They were groundbreaking methods that were receiving the standard scoff from the medical community. And now she wanted to try them on my wife. By now I knew the pain that hope could bring.  I consented nonetheless. 
Needless to say; her methods worked.  Two more times in fact. 
So here we are over 2 years later and I’m harboring my own personal guilt.  I had never met the woman responsible for my son.  That’s right, pretty pathetic.  I mentioned my desire to do so to my wife on numerous occasions but never took the time. A hectic work schedule, travel, etc., you know the usual excuses.  Dr. Davis had performed her magic and slipped into the background.  She didn’t deliver our son, she merely made it possible.  And I never took the effort to meet her. 
So here I am face to face with Dr. Davis.  I’m noticeably embarrassed but she washes away all awkwardness with a warm smile and a full embrace. We talk for a full fifteen minutes.  She’s a delightful and impressive woman—full of energy and infectious optimism.  She strokes my son’s face with a sparkle in her eye.  She’s the kind of person that makes an immediate impact.  The kind that you know instantly you will never forget.
Her presence here this day is as peculiar as this story’s outcome.  Dr. Davis seldom came to this hospital and certainly never on a Sunday.  She was here to pay a personal visit to a friend on the third floor.  We were on the fifth.  She had pushed the wrong floor number.   
Through a twist of fate I had met the miracle woman.  Not that big of a deal, right?  Read on.
Dr. Davis died of a heart attack the following morning.  She was only 55.  Up until the moment of her death there had been no telltale sign of heart concerns.
A sad but true story.
Fate, God or Coincidence?
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  1. What an incredible story! Everything happens for a reason, whether we know it or not (usually not, at least in my case). I'm so happy for you that you had the opportunity to thank the person who helped you and your wife have such blessings. And thank you for sharing your story.

  2. Being that she is not an obstetrician, she probably rarely saw the outcome of her work. How lucky she was to see tangible results and all the joy she brought to this world through you and your family! That day, you were the unknowing angels who brought happiness, peace, and closure before she had to move on. Thank you for a wonderful story!

  3. Wow, Will...I stumbled upon your blog, reposted by Rene on Twitter. I am a huge fan of fate, God, and the Universe's Way. The best part of all is the ultimate sense of purposefullness you gave Dr. Davis on the last day of her life. She closed her eyes with a true sense of the legacy she's left behind!

  4. Hi Will,

    Sounds - most definitely - like a God thing to me. Both sides received a blessing that day.

    God answers so many 'unasked' prayers and always answers 'asked' prayers. We might not receive the answer we want, but it depends on whether what we desire is what God wants for us. And whatever God wants is the best thing for all of us... whether we can see that or not :)


  5. It's a God thing, and gift for both her and you. God thinks of the little things, doesn't he? What a blessing.

  6. I swung on over here from Twitter and wow, I'm glad I did. What vulnerability you share, what humility & gratitude, as well.
    I recently had an experience that seemed unlikely, when I kept getting a sign to sit on a bench and wait, for no particular reason. I tried getting up a few times, but it was like a voice kept whispering to just sit still. And around the corner came he...the man who has captured my heart.
    The universe is a mysterious thing.
    I'm glad you had the opportunity to meet Dr. Davis and close the circle. May we all have these gifts of serendipity.
    Count me in as a new subscriber!

  7. What an incredible story! These "chance" encounters do make a person wonder if and how God was involved. I'm glad you got to meet this wonderful doctor...and even happier that you were able to have children.

  8. Life... There is so much about this journey of ours we simply do not understand. A friend of mine sent me, for other "coincidental" reasons, a passage from the Gita that really struck a chord:

    Whatever happened, it happened well.
    Whatever is happening, it is happening well.
    Whatever will happen, it will also happen well.
    What of yours did you lose?
    Why or for what are you crying?
    What did you bring with you, for you to lose it?
    What did you create, for it to be wasted or destroyed?
    Whatever you took, it was taken from here.
    Whatever you gave, it was given from here.
    Whatever is yours today, will belong to someone else tomorrow.
    On another day, it will belong to yet another.
    This change is the law of the universe.

  9. That is one powerful story - and I don't believe in coincidence. You were meant to run into her on that specific day for a reason. Fate is a mysterious thing...and I think sometimes it's really ourselves doing it. Subconsciously we know something and acting on our intuition we follow it - and it's "fate".