So, I had a week of what some might consider bizarre luck. On Sunday, I found a dead body. That Friday, I won two tickets to The Dempster Family Foundation Casino Night, an event I’ve been wanting to go to since it started in 2010. Now, I’ll tell you this. I felt like the time between that Sunday and that Friday was weeks, possibly because these two things are like polar opposites of what you want from your day (unless, of course, you’re looking for a dead body and you can’t stand the Cubs and/or casinos, but let’s not go splitting the hairs of a bald man here and focus).
When I won the tickets I couldn’t believe my luck. I don’t have that kind of luck. No one would call me a lucky person (unless it comes to avoiding dying in fiery auto crashes and in that case, I’m really quite lucky). If there’s a group of people and something good could happen to one of them, I’m not that one. So my natural reaction is disbelief followed by thinking it’s either a dream, a delusion, a joke, or I’m misinterpreting something. After I won the tickets, I told Carrie that I hoped my luck would hold through Casino Night.
But that got me thinking…what does that even mean?
Someone once told me that luck is when preparation meets opportunity. I’ll buy that in terms of good luck. Too often I’m ready, but the opportunity doesn’t present itself. And then when it does present itself, I’m not ready. At least for me, these two points converge only rarely.
But if we go by this definition, then bad luck is either not being prepared or not having an opportunity. So me finding a dead body wasn’t bad luck, like some people said. It was just unfortunate. And therefore, winning the tickets wasn’t a turn around of luck that week. It was just a spot of good luck after an unfortunate incident.
I was presented with the opportunity and I was prepared to say yes (having a little black dress at the ready didn’t hurt).
So this leads me to think about the rest of my life. Preparation is important and I know that. I do try to be prepared. I fail at that a lot, but it’s not for lack of trying. I have very little control over opportunities presenting themselves. I try to make my own opportunities, but like being prepared, I tend to fail. It kills me when I get a shot at something I’m not ready for, particularly because I know it’s not going to come around again.
And so, I am unlucky. I tend to have bad luck.
But those spots of good luck, however rare they might be, keep me working to be prepared for opportunities. Some day, I will turn my luck around.