Coincidence or God’s Plan?
This was not intended to be my 2nd blog post, but it was a recent event that warranted sharing immediately.
We had a skydiving event at Skydive Spaceland-Dallas for 2 cancer survivors and their companions on April 22, 2023. The weather was beautiful and it was a great day for skydiving. Little did we know that another beautiful event would come out of this day.
We missed the first instructional class by a few minutes, which I was bummed about because I needed to leave the drop zone by 3:30 pm and was hoping to get done early in the afternoon. But I let it go knowing it would work out. When the tandem instructor, Carl, called our group into the training room there were just the 4 people from 2 Miles of Smiles and 2 other girls. It’s always nice having a small class because Carl really connects with our group since he is also a cancer survivor. We had been in the class for 5 minutes or so when another gentlemen joined our group. As Carl was connecting with this new gentleman, he told us why he was there.......his wife passed away from cancer a year ago and skydiving was something they always wanted to do together, but never got the chance to, so today he was going to skydive in honor of his late wife. Isn’t it ironic that our group ended up in that class with Dave Craig so he could have a connection that day?
After the class, our group sat at a table and I had them create their “expression board”, which is a chalk board where they can write, or drawn anything they want about why they are skydiving. I noticed Dave sitting by himself, so I approached him and said how sorry I was about his wife. I told him about our “expression boards” and asked him to join us and create one in honor of his wife. He was touched about being included, and from that moment on, he became part of our group.
The 2 cancer survivors with 2 Miles of Smiles started sharing stories about their cancer journey, and how their companions played a big part in their recovery. When Dave shared his touching story about his wife, Ellis Emerson, it was with tears in his eyes, which got all of us crying. We then started sharing life with each other. I told them Mark and I met when I went skydiving with a singles group and he was my tandem instructor. Apparently all those prayers about having a “good guy fall from the sky” for me, was taken literally by God. Everyone joined in and shared stories about meeting their spouses, and Dave’s story was…..he is also a cancer survivor and met Ellis during their treatments. That just confirmed Dave was meant to be with our group on that beautiful day, since our nonprofit is all about giving the cancer patient/survivor the exhilarating experience of skydiving. We also discovered that Dave is the CEO at Gryt Health, which helps cancer patients and caregivers find the help they’re looking for when they need it. What a great connection for 2 Miles of Smiles that can help spread the news of our mission “Empowering cancer patients and survivors through skydiving”.
If you want to connect with Dave and see the good works that GrytHealth is doing, their web site is: https://grythealth.com/
So, the question becomes, was it coincidence or God’s Plan that Dave ended up in the training session with us and became part of our group?
Several things had to fall into place for that to happen.
· We missed the first class
· Dave hadn’t planned on skydiving that day, he said “I just woke up and decided to go”
· The timing of his decision put him in our class
· He shared he was skydiving in honor of his wife that passed away from cancer 1 year ago, so there was an immediate connection
· I asked him to create an “expression board”
· Our group took him in as one of our own
· Everyone shared stories so Dave felt included in our group and was comfortable being vulnerable so he could share memories of Ellis.
· Dave had a connection with other cancer survivors that day so he was able to share the experience with others that had walked in his shoes overcoming cancer. It may not have been a jump with his wife, but at least it was with new friends that cared about him and wanted his day to be special.
With all these things falling into place, it was not a coincidence, but God’s ultimate plan to assure Dave would not be alone that day as he went skydiving in honor of his wife. And on that day, Dave was 14,000 feet closer to Ellis as he soared through the Blue Skies!!