On March 14, 2016, Carole Thorpe was interviewing me on her Charlottesville, Virginia radio show, “The Fat Lady Sings with Carole Thorpe”. Carole described a coincidence involving her best friend from young adulthood who died 25 years ago, at age 29, and his sister whom she had never met.
The day before and unrelated to our interview, Carole decided to look for her friend’s sister online. Through several internet iterations. Carole discovered that the sister was living in London, England and has a son named Matthew who is on the autism spectrum. Carole also has a son named Matthew who is on the autism spectrum.
Carole felt a connection to her long-lost friend and felt a little less alone knowing that someone else had a son with a similar problem.
I found the story personally significant because I specialize in helping people with high functioning Asperger’s. It was even more surprising because a person associated with programming for my radio interview the previous week also wondered if her daughter was on the spectrum.
Carole then broke for commercials. The first was a community service announcement about people with autism which was followed by five or six commercials. These commercials all had been pre-programmed for airing more than 24 hours prior to the show.
What were the odds of that community service announcement showing up after four mentions of autism? Pretty low!
The meaning of a shared coincidence varies from person to person. After all, witnessing any event, each of stands in a different place providing a different perspective. For me, the autism string was more evidence that I tend to be involved in coincidences. Shortly after watching me in the middle of another coincidence, a good friend of mine said, “You not only talk the talk, but you walk the walk.” Here was another example.