Coincidence or Synchronicity?

Steph_2_cropped. jpgBy Stephanie Stamm

Merriam-Webster defines coincidence as “the occurrence of events that happen at the same time by accident but seem to have some connection.”

Synchronicity is defined as “the coincidental occurrence of events and especially psychic events (as similar thoughts in widely separated persons or a mental image of an unexpected event before it happens) that seem related but are not explained by conventional mechanisms of causality.” This definition includes the note that this meaning of the term is “used especially in the psychology of C. G. Jung.”

I’ve been thinking about these terms because of something that happened to me last week on one of my evening walks.

I was about three-quarters of the way through my walk, on my way back to the apartment where I’m currently staying, when a car pulled up beside me. The woman behind the wheel lowered the passenger side window and said something I couldn’t hear because I hadn’t yet managed to silence the music streaming into my ears from my phone. I shut off the music, apologized, and she repeated her question: “Can you tell me where the Dunwoody Police Station is located? It’s supposed to be on this street.”

I told her I was new to the area myself, so I didn’t really know. But I asked if she had an address.

“It’s number 41,” she said.

I have been walking this same route for about six weeks now, and I had passed signs indicating numbers—41, 47, 53—but I hadn’t noticed anything about a Police Department.

41_47_53

“I think it’s on that side.” I gestured to the other side of the median that separated the opposing lanes of traffic. “Somewhere back in that park area.”

The woman thanked me, I wished her luck, and we both went on our way.

I had walked only about a block more when I found a driver’s license staring up at me from the sidewalk. At first I stepped over it and kept walking. “Some jogger just dropped it and will come back looking for it,” I thought. But then it occurred to me that the person might even live in my building, so I went back and picked up the license to check the address. It was from a neighboring county.

What should I do? I could mail the license to the indicated address, but I didn’t know if that was the best option. So I did what most plugged-in people would do. I took my phone out of my pocket and asked Google:  “What do I do with a found driver’s license?”

What do you think the answer was? Yep, you guessed it. Take the license to the police.

So I walked toward the nearest 41, 47, 53 sign and followed the bread crumbs to the Dunwoody Police Department, where I turned the license over to a smiling officer who thanked me for doing the right thing.

Police_Dept_Sign

Funny how things happen. The woman had stopped to ask me for help, but her question ended up helping me.

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I am the author of the New Adult/Young Adult urban fantasy series, The Light-Bringer:

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I have also contributed stories (one fictional and one true) to the following volumes:

Undead of Winter Front Only Into the Storm Cover

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18 Responses to Coincidence or Synchronicity?

  1. Doris says:

    Stephanie, I do think we are given ‘sign’s all the time, we just have to realize it. This one, it is a doozy. What a wonderful story, and I can see it leading to a great mystery book. Having said the above, we sometimes wonder why we chose a certain route, why someone chose us to answer a questions. Loved this post. Doris

    Liked by 1 person

    • sstamm625 says:

      Thanks, Doris! I was pretty amazed. The signs couldn’t have been much clearer on this one, I think. 🙂 Then again, there may still be more to come: the beginning of a great mystery as you said.

      Like

  2. That’s definitely a coincidence, and I learned a new thing today, what to do with a found driver’s license.

    Like

  3. Joe Stephens says:

    Neat how things work out isn’t it? I enjoyed your blog post!

    Like

  4. Wranglers says:

    Wonderful. Thank you for thos bot of inspiration. Loved the way it turned out. Del’s father’s wallet was returned to his mom 20 years after his dad had died. He had lost it in the ventimg system of a building. Cher’ley

    Like

  5. I was waiting for you to say the driver’s license belonged to the woman who stopped you to ask for directions to the police station — now that would have been a whopper of an ending (and, as Doris said, make for a great novel!) Hope you’re enjoying your new place of residence, Stephanie!

    Liked by 1 person

    • sstamm625 says:

      That would have made a whopper of an ending! I did see her getting into her car in the parking lot when I reached the police station. I called to her, but she didn’t hear me.

      Like

  6. Mike Staton says:

    One of those feel-good moments, eh? A good deed done. Like Gayle, I expected you to arrive at the PD and have the woman there reporting a missing license.

    Like

  7. Loved the post Stephanie. It definitely gives one pause for thought, doesn’t it? We’ve all had similar incidents, I’m sure, but many people don’t take the time to realize the connection. What a great story – I expected the license to belong to the woman too!

    Like

    • sstamm625 says:

      I had to ponder it all for a while–and obviously it struck me enough to write the blog post about it. It just felt so–meant to be. I would have really pondered if the license had belonged to the woman.

      Like

  8. Reblogged this on L.LEANDER BOOKS and commented:
    This is such a great post I can’t help sharing it with my readers. Is there a connection? Read this post by Author Stephanie Stamm on Writing Wranglers and Warriors and find out!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. S. J. Brown says:

    Nice post. I am sure the person who lost the license really appreciates that you turned it in. As a bonus you now know where the police station is.

    Like

  10. Neva Bodin says:

    I think these things do happen more often than we note. I can think of two incidences of synchronicity in my life and I know there are more. I just didn’t know what to call them. One was when I was at work in a nursing home and suddenly a picture of my mother in a hospital bed flashed through my mind. A couple hours later my father called to say my mother was in the hospital and he was afraid she was going to die. Another was I thought I saw a car full of nuns come through an intersection I was sitting at, I looked again and was mistaken. After I turned the corner, I met a car full of nuns.

    Like

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