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Magical Colored Glasses
By Marissa Kristal
I don't believe in coincidences. As sure as I am that the grass
is green (and even greener on the other side), I know in my heart
that everything happens for a reason. I've always had a knack for
philosophy, a keen desire to constantly question what is. But in
the last year or so, I've unearthed a spiritual awareness deep within,
and the exhumation has not only transformed me, but significantly
enhanced the quality of my life. It's amazing what a little spiritual
understanding can do for your sense of self and your view of the
world. Suddenly, random people on the street are no longer strangers.
Great pain and misfortune hold meaning and purpose. And chance happenings
are no longer haphazard coincidences. There are no coincidences.
A few weeks ago I was having one of those groggy, crushing, too-early
Monday mornings. The kind that make you want to permanently retreat
under your covers and start paying your exorbitant rent to your
inviting, cozy comforter rather than your sometimes offensive, always
discourteous management company. Begrudgingly, I set out on my morning
commute. And while usually an expert at the good mood fake-out,
on this rotten morning I couldn't even manage the phony, uneven-lipped
smile. As I was waiting in the seemingly endless line to get out
of the subway station, the person behind me stepped on my heel.
On a normal morning, I would've ignored it and kept moving. But
on this aggravating dawn, I let out a loud, exasperated "Ughh!!"
Immediately I felt bad. No, I hadn't turned around and hit her,
or said something offensive such as, "you should really put
a comb through that rat's nest you call hair," but I had been
rude nonetheless. And my sidekick, guilt, wasn't about to let me
forget it. As I continued forward up the subway stairs, a woman
heading towards me dropped her sunglasses. Instantaneously I bent
down and picked them up. And as I nonchalantly handed them to her
and witnessed her very grateful expression, it hit me: this interaction
was meant to happen. I was being given an opportunity to pay it
forward; to show the kindness that just moments before I couldn't
- wouldn't - muster.
Eight months ago a painful breakup left my soul defeated, my heart
badly bruised and my once healthy self-confidence entirely drained
and depleted. On a particularly low day, I left the apartment I'd
been unendingly holding myself hostage in to get a muffin. As I
walked inside the bake shop, my eyes directly met Jeff's. I didn't
yet know Jeff, but the way his eyes instantly recognized mine made
him familiar. As he approached me, I was certain he mistakenly thought
he knew me. But all he said was, "I'm captivated by you. Who
are you?" And on any other day, I would have dismissed it for
a ridiculous pick-up line. But on this cheerless day, they were
just the words I needed to hear. The confidence that moments before
lay placid in a soiled puddle on the floor suddenly slid back through
my ridges and re-nourished my dehydrated spirit.
A month or so later I was in my home state of Minnesota for a weeklong
visit. I was enjoying a carefree afternoon playing princesses with
my 4-year-old niece Annie, when all of a sudden a concerned and
affected look colored her sweet, little-girl face as she said, "I'm
glad you split." I was dumbfounded. Split? What did she mean?
What had I split? Then it hit me. Up until that moment regrets regarding
my break-up had been festering in my heart and my trip home was
all about clearing my mind and working through afflicted emotions.
And without realizing the weight of her words, wise-beyond-her-years
Annie solidified my decision and put my twitching heart at ease.
These are just a few non-coincidences that have recently occurred
in my world, and with each one I become increasingly aware that
people and situations are placed in our path for a reason. And it's
up to all of us to wake up and take notice. I now carry a non-coincidence
journal with me everywhere I go so I never forget any of the incredible
(or mundane, should they happen to be) encounters. And even if coincidences
really do exist and there's no purpose behind this chaotic disarray
we call "life," then so be it.
But I much prefer life's view from my magical colored glasses.
© Marissa Kristal 2005