Good Bad Luck

I always used to wonder about my dad whether he had bad luck or actually had really good luck and had just been dealt a bad hand in life.

I can’t remember whether I told this story here before, but when I was in high school we were at a track meet and some idiot threw a discus straight up in the air and it came down and hit my dad. Bad luck, right?

Except, it just scraped down the back of his spine and took a layer of skin with it. Hurt like hell and we had to go to the emergency room, but three inches difference and he would’ve probably been dead.

Same with his first transplant. He found out he was rejecting his kidney the same day he found out my mom was pregnant with me. And then there was the second transplant when he got pneumonia and a Hep-positive kidney and almost died. He spent three months in the ICU and lost part of a long, but he pulled through. His whole life was like that.

So was that bad luck that those things happened? Or good luck that they turned out okay enough in the end?

I like to think it was good luck. And that I got a little of it, too.

As I write this it’s two in the morning and I’m sitting on the bathroom floor in my mom’s house crying as I type.

Because that big fire we had in Colorado earlier today? The one that destroyed hundreds of homes? That’s where I moved to earlier this year.

I was at that Target in Superior just this morning. Miss Priss (my Newfie) and I have walked through so many of those neighborhoods on our morning walks. (I figured since we were in an apartment now I’d let her lead our walks and she took us on hour-plus walks all over that area. I don’t know how she does it at her age, but she does.)

So pretty shit luck, right? Move somewhere and five months later the whole area goes up in flames?

Except, we’re safe. I smelled smoke around noon and decided that even though nothing was really on the news at that point in time that it was best if we packed up and got out.

So I took the pup, myself, my work and personal computers, my passport, some food for her, her many many medicines, and a couple changes of clothes and we headed for my mom’s.

I wish I’d known I was possibly leaving everything I owned behind for good. There was a letter my dad wrote that I received this year (27 years after he died) that I wish I’d brought. And this cute hedgehog drawing my mom did for me. And that box of fancy cheeses I’d just splurged and bought myself. And my frickin’ phone charger.

But those are just things. We got out. And we had somewhere to go. We’ll carry on.

Which is pretty damned lucky, really, if you think about it. So, see? Good bad luck.

(And as of now I don’t actually know if my place burned down. So maybe more good bad luck there if it didn’t. Who knows? Although I have to image the smoke damage alone will be ugly. Still, I’d like that letter my dad wrote, smoke-filled or not.)

Author: M.L. Humphrey

M.L. Humphrey is a former securities regulator, registered stockbroker (although only briefly), and consultant on regulatory and risk-related matters for large financial institutions with expertise in the areas of anti-money laundering regulation, mutual funds, and credit rating agencies. Since 2013 M.L. has also been a published author under a variety of pen names and across a variety of subjects and genres. You can contact M.L. at mlhumphreywriter [at]

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