The Probability of a Miracle

(An open letter to my son)


I thought I would drop you a note and try to say something inspirational that might prove to be life changing words of wisdom…or something like that. Alas, I am only an ordinary dad and I possess little skill in imparting earth-shattering wisdom. But, I will try.

Anyway, it’s been ten years since your first miraculous lifesaving heart procedure. Yes, I used the words “miraculous” and “lifesaving” in the same sentence. I could bore you with probability tree diagrams to attempt to illustrate the astronomical chance that you had for survival. In hindsight, it was indeed a race against a ticking time bomb that we did not know existed until it was about to go off. Then suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere, all of the right people with all of the right answers were exactly at the right place… at exactly the right time.

There was, without a doubt, divine work at play. God has plans for your life. It may be big: Like when, without really knowing why he did it, Dr. Nugent spontaneously decided answer the front desk phone (something he said that he never does) not knowing your scared  and worried mom was on the other end of the line. Then again it may be small: Like when your pediatrician’s nurse suddenly thought she should check the blood pressure in your ankle. God’s purpose for us is to connect with those around us…doing good things. And perhaps, changing or saving lives with simplest of deeds.

Now that you’re away at college, I don’t see a whole lot of you anymore.  Over Christmas break it seems like I only saw you for about 42 seconds when you appeared for supper, but it only seems that way. We had a really nice holiday visit. I do miss you being around, but I know you’ve got serious business to take care of.

I am immensely proud of you. I especially like your vision for yourself, the way you can project onto a future version of yourself and what you dream about doing. I also like your independence, and the way you take care of yourself even when it frightens me and your mom just a little bit. You’ve never been much of a whiner and that makes you a superior kid in my book.

I love you son,