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April 18, 2016

Thank You for Not Coming Home.

Pavita Singh

When I was growing up, my dad traveled extensively for work. He therefore wasn’t home very much.

Though my dad’s limited presence was difficult on my mom, my sister and me, we cherished the time that he was able to spend at home. Typically, we spent our time as a family going out to eat, watching movies and just relaxing at home.

In 2001, my family was living in Princeton, New Jersey. In August 2001, my dad started a job in San Francisco, California. My mom, my sister and I would be joining my dad in California in a few short months. In the meantime, my dad flew home to New Jersey every weekend to see us.

The weekend of September 8th and 9th, 2001, my dad was away on business. He was to spend Monday, September 10th at home with us before flying back to California.

That weekend, my dad’s boss called him telling him that he needed him back in California on Monday. Of course, we were upset that he couldn’t spend Monday with us.

To this day, I am grateful that he did not spend that Monday with us.

Had everything gone as originally planned, my dad would have been on United flight 93 from Newark, New Jersey to San Francisco, California on the morning of September 11, 2001.

United 93 never made it to San Francisco. Instead, it was hijacked by terrorists and ultimately crashed in a field in Pennsylvania. No one survived.

My dad spending Monday at home would have meant never spending another day with him again.

Sometimes when things don’t work out as we might have wished, it can end up being the greatest blessing in disguise.

Even if we’re not able to realize why certain events in our life play out the way they do, I believe that the universe has a plan for all of us and that everything happens for a reason. The reason may not be immediately obvious, but trusting in the universe’s plan and having faith that everything will work out the way it’s supposed to can help us cope with this uncertainty.

My dad’s evading United 93 on September 11, 2001 was one of my first lessons in trusting the universe.

Since 2001, there have been several instances in my life of things not working out the way I would have hoped. In some cases, I have discovered the hidden blessing in not getting what I wanted. In other cases, I am still waiting for the lesson or the reason to reveal itself. Having faith that the right things will happen at the right time allows me to deal with the difficult situations in my life.

Admittedly, I know I could do a much better job of expressing my appreciation to both my dad and my mom.

But I do know that my dad’s not coming home on September 10, 2001 is one of the best things that could have happened for our family. I am thankful for all the time that we were granted to spend together since then, and for the time that we will still be able to spend together in the future.

Every day, I am thankful that the universe had other plans for my dad on September 11, 2001.

 

 

 

~

Author: Pavita Singh

Editor: Travis May

Photo: Author’s own

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Pavita Singh

Pavita Singh—like Audrey Hepburn—believes in pink, in laughing, in kissing (a lot), and in miracles. She is a recent graduate of Yale University, where she received her Master of Public Health. Her passions include mental health, youth development, education, empowerment of girls and women, reproductive health, and creative arts. Presently, she works at a startup called Konversai and a nonprofit called Girls Health Ed. She also has her own editing business called pavEDITa. Pavita has traveled in 29 countries and counting, and she is excited to continue her explorational journey. She enjoys yoga, puzzles, painting, reading and writing, cooking and baking, spending time with her family and friends, and telling funny stories. Connect with Pavita on Facebook!