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IMG_7987Let’s face it – things never go just like we planned.   Whether it’s our career, mornings trying to get kids to school, some quiet time to relax, all that laundry piling up, even family time over Spring Break … things have a way of getting off track.

But I’ve been learning something really important lately: What goes wrong is as valuable to my life as what goes right. Don’t believe me?  Keep reading!

I am an avid school sport attender.  I go to every game, am cheering even when no else does, they even gave me a sweatshirt.  Friday evening my boys had a soccer game in Ogden, and my daughter had a class in Orem.  Both at 4:00.  We had to divide and conquer – so my husband headed to Ogden and I went to Orem, sad that I had to miss a game.

Dreaded Phone Call

About half way through the game my husband called.  First words out of his mouth,”You’re not going to be happy!”  He told me my son had broken his collarbone in the game and they were headed to the Emergency Room in Ogden.  What?!?  Of course, during the game I’m not attending.  So I hit the road to Ogden and got there right as the doctor was starting his exam.

Pretty straight forward.  Broken collarbone.  Will most likely need surgery.  Season is over for my son.  Definitely not what we all planned.  You can count on “unplanned” things happening on a regular basis. You already know this. It’s part of life.  And perhaps life would be quite boring if things were always perfect.

Unplanned Things = Good Opportunities

(adapted from Life Learning Today)

So what can we learn from my son’s accident?  I wasn’t sure there was anything to be learned, but for the sake of this blog post, I started thinking!

  • We might not have slowed down long enough to see opportunities.  I’ve had the chance to really connect and serve my big strong teenage son.  I’ve had to dress him (just his shirt!) and help him in the middle of the night with pain medicine.  I’ve had the chance to spend some slowed down time, just he and I, and have had to reprioritize things.

  • There may be in pain when things go wrong, but there might also be happiness.  Make sure to look for it.  The Saturday after the accident, there was a parade of girls coming to visit and wait on him.  Now I’m pretty sure this might make a 16 year old boy pretty happy!  (And his brothers were anything but sympathetic, so it’s a good thing the girls showed up!)

  • We can learn from the things that go wrong, so we can avoid them in the future.  He may not be able to avoid an accident in the future, but he now knows a little more about disappointment and what it means to keep your head up.  And he knows to be a little careful out there – that he’s not indestructible.

  • Sometimes it works out better than what we had planned in the first place.  This one relates to me.  I had a patient scheduled on Wednesday for the entire day.  We arranged a nurse anesthetist for sedation, everything.  This patient called today and cancelled – she got her gall bladder out over the weekend and wasn’t up for extensive dental work.  We were all distraught – it was the entire day we now had to fill!  Fast forward a few hours – all of a sudden that open day gave me opportunity to move some patients around so I can be there for my son’s surgery tomorrow.  I would not have been able to plan that one.

  • At least you’ll always have a story to tell.  The doctor told him he will have a plate that will be visible through the skin.  Won’t that be fun to talk about!  Never a dull moment when you have a plate in your collarbone!

How Do We Handle Unplanned Things?

So fix what might need fixing, but realize things happen, sometimes they are supposed to happen and sometimes they just happen.  Either way there is always something to learn.  Even if it’s just how to laugh, love, learn, help each other, slow down and be grateful.   Remember:

  • They are not mistakes.

  • They are not accidents.

  • Expect them.

  • Embrace them.

  • Find the good.

  • Find the opportunities.

  • Find the humor.

  • Find the learning.

What Can We Takeaway?

So on your journey, enjoy the roadblocks, the giant log on your path, the unpredicted snowstorm, the computer crash, the broken collarbone and all the other inconveniences big and small that come your way. Remember to keep asking the right questions and you can make the unplanned work in your favor:

  • What can I learn?

  • What opportunities does this give me?

  • Where’s the humor?

  • What did I gain from this?

  • What is the good?

  • What can I do differently going forward now that I’ve learned?

As your Lehi, UT dentist, don’t stop planning or give up goals entirely, but embrace the unplanned events as much as the ones that go according to plan.


Dr. Michelle Jorgensen

This information is not meant as medical advice. It is provided solely for education. Our practice would be pleased to discuss your unique circumstances and needs as they relate to these topics.

Lehi, UT, Dentists – Total Care Dental

Specializing In Cosmetic Dentistry, Sedation Dentistry, Holistic Dentistry Near Lehi, Utah

Come experience Total Care Dental and you will see that our American Fork, Utah (UT) dentists and staff offer state-of-the-art, quality dental care services with a smile to patients in our local community, including: Provo, Pleasant Grove, Lehi, Orem, Lindon, Alpine Highland, Springville, Spanish Fork and surrounding areas. Whether you are seeking an American Fork general dentist, sedation dentist, or a completely different approach to dental care, we are here to provide results and the most enjoyable dental visit you will ever have! Call us at (801) 756-3737 and experience the difference with Total Care Dental.

Total Care Dental
12 S 1100 E
American Fork, UT 84003

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