By Dana Stovern

My husband, Bob, and I were en route to Grand Junction, Colorado’s airport to catch our connecting flights into Portland, Oregon. I was scheduled to give a presentation and coaching sessions at New Renaissance Book Shop over the weekend. That’s when the text from the airlines came across my phone announcing a 47-minute maintenance delay. That would put us into Salt Lake City, Utah right about the time our connecting flight would be taking off.

This travel delay is how our trip began, even though I’d diligently been practicing, for several weeks, a freshened mantra that a colleague had given me. The intonation is a repetition of “Everything is working out better than I imagined or expected.” However, the mantra didn’t seem to be impacting the beginning of our trip with this delay. Or so I thought.

When I read the flight delay news, my first thought was, “I’m hedging my flight bets.” I’d been through rough waters with recent travels, and I wasn’t going to take any chances with this delay.

In the meantime, my husband dug in his heels with determination stating, “There is no way I’m spending a night in Salt Lake City. I want to get to Portland!” 

After arriving at the airport, I reviewed my options with the check-in counter. All information pointed toward rebooking our flights, resulting in an early morning departure out of Salt Lake the next day. Meanwhile, Bob continued to focus his resolve on “We are getting to Portland tonight!”

As we boarded the plane to Salt Lake City, I heard in the back of my head, the repeatedly streaming words, “Everything works out better than imagined or expected.” I held back my internal sarcasm of “Hmmm, I don’t know,” as Bob and I took our assigned seats in different locations on the plane. And as if the Universe was trying to make a point, I was seated in the very last row. All. By. Myself.

I challenged the Universe. “Everything works out better than expected, eh?” Then challenged more with, “And seated at the back of the plane, so I’m the last person off, eh?” The Universe began to chuckle.

Halfway through the puddle-jumping flight into Salt Lake, I felt the first wave of light energy flow through me, lifting me. It was so powerful I wondered if the tail of the plane was getting lifted like a duck’s curly tail.

The wave of energy continued with such force that tears welled in my eyes, wrapping me in a sense of grace that whatever was happening was very, very special. As we made our descent into Salt Lake, I’d already resigned myself to staying overnight there with the redemptive powers of the Universe. 

Surprisingly though, something else entirely happened. As I disembarked from the plane, bantering with myself about how “Everything works out better than imagined or expected,” my husband met me at the gate and said, “Let’s go for it!” I was up for the challenge, figuring I didn’t have anything to lose. So, we ran together down the concourse, the wheels under our baggage whirring at high spin.

We rounded the bend from one concourse and down another arriving at the gate for the connecting flight only to see the plane just pulling away from the gateway. We slumped and sighed out a loud, “Ohhhhh. So close.”

That’s when we heard a voice behind us say, “Just wait. They’ll be back.” We turned around and saw a woman sitting there, waiting for the next flight. She continued, saying that the flight attendants would return to the desk. I looked over at the counter and sure enough, saw a purple cardigan entering the area. Bob and I looked at one another and decided to wait, and as we did, we witnessed the most fantastic thing, the pilots stopped the plane!

Minutes later, three airline attendants returned to the desk, actively discussing flight issues while several first-class passengers from another connecting flight also showed up. What ensued was a confusion of tickets, names, passengers, and stand-by, all in the mix of flight attendants talking in code amongst themselves without announcing anything to us.

Suddenly, during the discussion, the impossible happened. We watched as the pilots pulled the plane back up to the gate, and re-engage the gateway. I thought “When does that happen?” Never!

We soon learned a thunderstorm had delayed the other flight; the pilots were returning for the first-class passengers. We just happened to be lucky bystanders who were able to claim seats as stand-by travelers!

Not wanting to ruin our chances, we agreed to everything with a nod as the flight crew scanned us through and ushered us onto the aircraft. And get this, I was seated in the front of the plane with an upgrade! A far cry from the back row by myself. 

Echoing all around me? “Everything happens better than imagined or expected.”

Bob was right. We were getting to Portland that night by the grace of his willingness to keep the faith. The Universe most certainly made the point and then continued to deliver as the rest of the trip unfolded, “Better than expected or imagined.”

Dana Stovern is the founder and coach of Somatic Money, delivering inter-personal body-based money relationship to business clients across the country. Her first love is writing, especially tongue-in-cheek spiritual articles with nuggets of self-growth for humor and enlightenment. You may find her Somatic Money work at www.somaticmoney.com and her spiritually candid articles at www.danastovern.com.


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