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Bob Walsh and Norm Dasenbrook
Nov 15, 2010


The June 2010 edition of Psychology Today featured a series of articles on Serendipity. Although not the premiere professional journal for counselors, PT is always interesting, and each month they send it free to my waiting room at the office, good for waiting clients as well as reading material when there are a few minutes of down time for me. This particular issue made the point that optimism and keeping one’s “eyes on the prize” is a valuable way to approach life.

After reading the Psychology Today article, I thought about an amazing experience I had with serendipity some years ago. The point I wish to make here is an ethereal one. Serendipity can be seen as a mysterious happening. I wish to share this true story as an example of serendipity beyond the limits of common explanation.

During a counseling session with a client, a knock came on the office door. Opening the door I found my receptionist, white faced asking me to come to the receptionist area. There I saw a father holding a three year old who had stopped breathing and had turned a color humans hopefully never see. I was sharing office space with a Pediatrician. The father apparently panicked, and instead of calling the paramedics, he rushed to the doctor’s office. Tragically, the pediatrician was not there. The boy was dying. My adrenalin surged. In the thirty years I practiced counseling, I have seen maybe four doctors in my office as clients. This was one of the times. My client was an emergency room physician. He took charge, cleared the air passage, found the appropriate life saving equipment in the cabinets of the pediatrician’s office, and brought the boy back. He gave me one command, call 911. My hand shook but I got the job done and within four minutes, the paramedics and my client MD saved the three year olds life. Now explain this. Was this serendipity or God?

You help me answer.

Norm Dasenbrook and Bob Walsh are counselors in private practice, consultants, and authors (

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