She taps you on the shoulder in the most delicate of ways. You turn and see the face of an old friend, one that knows you well but whose middle name you never come to know. She’s the kind of friend that’s always nice to see. She sneaks up on you, and when you least expect it, too. Not the way that makes you throw the bowl of popcorn in the air when you’re watching a horror movie or when your friend is trying to scare the hiccups out of you. The jury is still out as to whether or not that actually works, the hiccup thing. No, she knows you better than to startle you, she knows how you don’t like scary movies. She knows you well. She sees the way your stomach hurts when you’re anxious and how lately you’ve been anxious all the time. She sees the way sleep doesn’t come easily and the way you seem to be afraid of everything all the time. Serendipity is different. She’s all about moments, single moments, the seemingly simply and insignificant ones. She’s humble too, allowing her handiwork to be credited to Fate, Destiny, and Blessing. She doesn’t mind. After all, Serendipity is complete goodness. Nothing about her is bad. No one claims it’s “just bad Serendipity” when their car gets a flat tire and your mother doesn’t say, “Oh, it’s okay. Serendipity happens” when you break a glass. Bad Luck and Accidents and Misfortune all shy away when Serendipity walks into the room. She shines with elegance and complexity as she’s hard to explain but undeniably magical in every way. And there’s something beautiful about the way you can’t find her if you try. She’s an adventure, unpredictable and free.
So, naturally I forgot all about her and overlooked her that night with the friends and the laughs and the nervous stomach. She forgives me, though.
“That’s just how it goes sometimes.”
And now I know. If ever again I’m asked what my favorite word is, I’ll remember her.
And if that moment ever arises, it’ll be her fault, too.