- An event or personal experience, often identified as coincidence, so astonishing that it is seen as a sign of divine intervention, especially when perceived as the answer to a prayer. [quotations ▼]
I can’t believe how many “coincidences” have taken shape in my life over the past year. I don’t know if I’m just more observant, more open, more outgoing … or what … but I feel like guardian angels or God himself is watching over me and my life situations and giving me little nudges to let me know that people (and life!) are really cool.
Friday morning after Thanksgiving I decided to go on a run to burn off some Thanksgiving dinner and desserts. I headed down my usual route which is down the neighborhood streets and around the large sidewalk path that circles the park to the south of us. I was surprised that there were hardly any people out – it was a gorgeous day and I’m sure most of us had some extra calories to get rid of. Thanksgiving had actually been pretty good and I wasn’t particularly sad about not spending it with my dad. Over the past few years, he had joined my husband’s family for dinner but it was becoming an obvious struggle for him to get himself (or be willing to be taken to) wherever we were having dinner. Last year, his fluid retention and breathing were so bad that he decided at the last minute to not go at all and I ended up taking him dinner in to-go containers from my in-law’s house. So, I guess, selfishly, it was a bit of a relief to not have to worry about whether he was having a good time or if he was just ready to go home. But the events of the past couple of weeks, as I have stepped up my work at the house to get it ready for the estate sale and to be put on the market, have been difficult. Anyway, as I was entering the park area on Friday, I saw just one other couple out and about. And as I got closer, I realized it was my hospice grief counselor and her husband, out walking their dog. I pulled out my earbuds and stopped my music as I ran up behind them and called out her name. She is such a sweetheart. She gave me a big hug (despite my “I’m sweaty” warnings!) and introduced me to her husband. She asked about my Thanksgiving, etc. I didn’t want to take up too much of her time, but just seeing her reminded me of how supportive she has been this past year and how much progress I have made in dealing with the loss of my parents. I loved that I saw her right then.
Fast forward to tonight, just 4 days later, I put off my run until this evening because I had a number of things I wanted to take care of this morning (including my already scheduled appointment with the fore-mentioned hospice grief counselor) . I did go on a 10 mile run (with some walking) on Saturday but I’m trying to increase the number of days per week that I run to get ready for the half marathons that are on my schedule. So, after dropping my daughter off at the high-school for her basketball practice this evening, I decided to run on the track there even though the sun was setting. I realized that now that football season is over they aren’t keeping the stadium lights on because nobody is out there practicing any more. There was one other lady at the track when I got there and we had arrived about the same time – I was thinking maybe I knew her as the speaker at a celebration dinner we had about 2 weeks ago to conclude the Journeys group meetings I was going to at church. If so, I was really hoping that I would get to meet her some day because her story was really touching – her husband passed away from the same brain tumor that my mom had. But, I couldn’t really tell if it was her – our church is pretty far away and so not too many people in our area go there, so chances were slim. I ran and this lady walked … I had decided to go for 3 miles. When I was at about 2.5 miles, I noticed that she had stopped, turned around and started walking towards me – even taking off her headphones like she was going to talk to me. So I stopped running, pulled out my headphones and stopped my Garmin. She walked up to me so I got a good look at her finally and she asked me how much longer I would be out there because she was getting creeped out by the darkness. She was hoping I’d keep running so she wasn’t alone. So….I took my chances and asked her if she was from my church … and it WAS her. I asked her if I could walk with her…I had intended to run more but this was a great opportunity to chat. So, we walked another mile .. in the dark… and we talked and talked. I could tell several weeks ago that she was just one of those people I would enjoy getting to know a bit better. I didn’t want to drag up painful memories but she told me that, after a while, nobody wants to hear her rehash those days with her husband’s illness and I feel exactly the same way about re-telling what we went through too. It was such a good conversation. She is amazing. When we were done she told me, like she had said in her talk at church that night, that she doesn’t believe in coincidences. She also said she was a “hugger” and again I warned “I’m sweaty!” and got another much needed hug. We needed to be on that track together tonight – I’ll call it a “God Wink”. I drove home with just the most uplifted spirit – amazed, again, at the blessing something as seemingly unrelated as running, can bring into my life.
So, in other news, I was so happy that I got the scale down to 174.4 pounds before Thanksgiving. And then I baked. I should not have baked anything, because I have determined that I have zero willpower now with home baked goods. It is very odd. The snacks and items that would have previously been determined as very “dangerous” don’t cause me any issues any more – but baked goods are a problem. Anyway, between Thanksgiving (I did have a small-medium sized plate of Thanksgiving dinner with some of the side dishes, but nothing crazy) and eating a bit too much of the cake I baked, my weight went up to 177lbs yesterday and was back to 176lbs. today. Still within my “new” green zone. But, I weigh in tomorrow with Dr. Ziltzer and I so very badly wanted to be down closer to 170lbs. I was so determined … and now disappointed in myself. And frustrated that running close to 15 miles during that fairly non-excessive eating has done nothing but have the scale inch back up. I almost tried to re-schedule my appointment this morning but, looking ahead at my schedule the next few weeks, tomorrow really is the best day to go face the music. The other issue is that my monthly friend is arriving any second now – like probably tomorrow morning, and there isn’t anything much worse than weighing in with that! I’m pretty sure that has contributed to my weight gain also since I tend to get pretty bloated feeling. Anyway, I’m not going to steer the conversation that way tomorrow, as I have done the last 2 appointments…because it just makes me feel crappy for really no reason. I had “maintained” at my last appointment and it sent me into a tailspin. And Dr. Z had not even brought any of it up – it was all my doing. Tomorrow I am going to focus on the good stuff – that I am basically “maintaining” even though I’m swinging wildly a couple of pounds up and down around my “new” goal weight. Since my last appointment, I have run both a half marathon AND a 15+ mile Ragnar relay…and I have survived two big “eating” holidays – Halloween AND Thanksgiving without a major weight gain. That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it…..