Fate, destiny, whatever else you want to call it. It’s one of the most commonly discussed topics in tandem with love. The concept of one person that we’re meant to be with, and the universe conspiring to make it happen. Has any other topic spawned as many low budget rom-coms and Quora questions than this one? I think not.
Is it real though? Does fate really exist? The question is so divisive and honestly I’m not really sure. There was a period of time when I definitely did believe in it though.
2016, that was a really hot and bothered time for me. As in, I was bothered about how not hot my love life was. I think I mentioned this before, but I consider myself to have been a pretty late bloomer when it came to relationships. I didn’t have my first kiss until I was 20, and I went through the entirety of high school and college without any relationship whatsoever. Never would I have thought of starting up a dating blog.
During this period, I got pretty wrapped up in the romance section of Netflix. I spent my lonely nights living vicariously through the fictional love lives of others. I thought if they could do it, so could I. Every event I attended was marked with this hope in the back of my mind. A new class, maybe I’d end up sitting next to my future wife. A trip to the basketball court, maybe there’ll be a girl there who’ll break my ankles and my heart. Would that day be the day that destiny intervened?
One of the most hopeful moments was my study abroad in Korea before senior year of college. New country, absolute freedom, sunny summer weather, this had to be it. I really believed.
Half of that study abroad goes by and nothing really occurs. But then two weeks before it was set to end, a miracle practically happens. I was in an arcade shooting gallery with my friend when this girl suddenly comes up to me and says, “Hey, your friend shoots better than you.” I was straight shook, for a variety of reasons.
- She spoke fluent English, but we were in Korea
- This girl was really good looking, and she was talking to me
- My friend was most definitely not a better shot than me, she was tripping
What a triple threat of emotions. It’s crazy enough when a girl approaches me instead of the other way around, but what was even crazier were the details of this girl. She was Korean, but she spoke fluent English because she was studying abroad in America. And not only did she study abroad there, but she did so in my hometown of STATEN ISLAND, New York.
If you’re not familiar, Staten Island is basically the forgotten step child of New York City. It’s technically a part of NYC, but if you’re a tourist that only has a day or two to visit, you should most definitely not be visiting it. It’s like going to China and deciding to tour around a random ditch instead of The Great Wall. It really would just make no sense.
This girl chose Staten Island out of all the places in the country because her uncle just happened to live there. How crazy is that? I’m studying abroad in Korea, and I must have found the only girl in the entire country who was doing the reverse and studying in my hometown. She literally lived less than 20 minutes away from me. Damn it still gets me to this day how amazingly improbable that was.
That girl would later go on to be my first ever girlfriend. The relationship did end pretty poorly after only a couple of months, but that’s another story. We’re talking about the start here.
Was that fate? I think the entirety of the circumstances were just so ridiculous, it’s hard for me to say that it wasn’t. But then again, winning the lottery is also highly improbable, and that happens every week. I’m conflicted over it. Something like that will probably never happen to me again, but on the other hand, I don’t really need or want it to. It wasn’t as if I ended up marrying that girl, so if it was fate, what did it accomplish really?
Ultimately I think life will throw us curve balls that work in our benefit, but we can’t always count on them to come. Even when they do come, they might not be the best possible thing for us. I think fate is an easy explanation for the hard to understand, but I wouldn’t treat it as an easy solution for the hard to accomplish. You probably still have to go out there to put the work in.