Happy mistakes. Those rare times when something goes technically wrong but turns out better than the originally anticipated outcome.
Many a situation has been saved by the Happy Mistake, and that has me wondering: who or what is responsible for this?
A few weeks ago my wife and I were hiking through the woods when the trail turned into a lane of shin high miniature boulders. We needed to step our way from rock to rock until we got to the end of the passage and back on dirt; about 40 yards.
Typically, in these situations, my wife is the one to trip, stumble or have a problem, but today was not typical.
This time it was my turn. I made a wide step to my left, onto a rock that seemed steady. When it flipped in towards me, it pushed my whole body up and to the right, where I had questionable footing anyway.
I knew I was going down, I knew I couldn’t stop it, and I knew it might be a rough one. So I just relaxed and let it happen. I fell over to the right, landing hard on 2 rocks; one on my right shoulder, the other just above the back of my right hip.
I have a nagging stiffness in that back/hip area that I’ve been battling for nearly 20 years, and now this rock pounds me at the perfectly wrong spot. Great.
My wife, expecting me to be hurt, wonders if I’m ok. “Can you get up?” she asks.
I’m not sure, but after taking stock for a second, I realize that I actually feel pretty good.
I stand up. And I feel even better.
My right hip feels loose and fantastic! Actually I feel good all over (this doesn’t last as my shoulder tightens up a lot over the coming days). But my hip is flexible!
I jump around and kick my legs to test it out. Amazing! The rock cured me!
Here we are weeks later and my hip is still feeling great. And all because I took a bad step and fell over onto some big stones.
It doesn’t make sense.
A Happy Mistake!
About a week later, I’m telling my chiropractor about this, and in between spinal adjustments he tells me this story:
There were 2 world class marathoners dueling it out down the stretch of a major race (I don’t recall the names or details the way he did).
As they approach the final few blocks, one of them begins to suffer a painful leg injury. Thinking he’ll have to pull back and finish second, he rounds the final corner with the other runner and steps directly into some sort of deep pothole or opening in the road. At first, the strike of pain is intense, and the runner imagines himself walking to the finish line in agony.
But as the moment passes, he is consumed with something else. The jolt has realigned his leg and left him feeling refreshed and spry. With a newfound energy, he turns on the jets, sprinting past the other runner and winning the marathon.
His stepping into a hole allowed him to get physically better and win the race!
Another Happy Mistake.
Who is responsible for these jolly accidents?
Is it divine intervention? If so, are these the situations we would choose to be divinely helped with? Not to sound ungrateful, but can we save these heavenly favors and call them in when we choose?
Is it pure, dumb luck?
Is it our subconscious, snapping us into some sort of emergency zone or head space that we typically can’t reach?
Throughout history there have been several Happy Mistakes resulting in things such as penicillin, Velcro, and even beer! Read details here.
Whatever or whoever is responsible for the Happy Mistake phenomena, I am thankful.
What Happy Mistakes have impacted your life? To whom or what do you give the credit?
For more stories visit my Five O’Clock Shadow blog.