When I was a child I learned that four-leaf clovers are good luck, and if I found one I was told I would have good luck for a day. It was never quite clear to me if it was the day you found the clover, or the next, but the promise of a good day sounded fantastic.
My children have learned from their classmates that finding a penny is good luck. They get very excited when they find change on the ground. They understand money buys things, but also realize there is almost nothing you can buy for a penny. It’s as though the penny represents more than one cent. It represents that something good happened to you. And if it happened once, it’s likely to happen again.
What is it about these signs of luck or good fortune that captivate us? The promise of happiness or good fortune coming our way expectedly, right?
Luck seems to help explain good things that are, well, unexplainable. A few examples of how I’ve experienced luck:
- Winning a prize for a contest that I’d never signed up for
- Running into an old friend in an airport thousands of miles away from where I grew up and where I currently live
- The day I met my spouse
Now, I realize their are nay-sayers who might attribute these experiences to fate or coincidence, and yet others who adamantly believe we create our own luck. I have to admit any of these things can be true, but I prefer to think of them as luck. They were unexpected, there is nothing I could have done to influence them happening, and they brought me joy.
There are certainly instances where we make good situations happen for ourselves, but isn’t it nice to think there’s a possibility something good might happen outside of our efforts?
I’m happy my boys think finding a penny is good luck. The happiness it brings them is priceless, it makes me smile. So does finding four-leaf clovers.
What unexpected joy have you experienced? Did luck play a part?
Happy St. Patrick’s Day