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Rainbow After Storm

Have you ever counted how many unexpected blessings happened in your life? Blessing, somehow, is a slightly distorted mirror of serendipity. They both represent happy things that happened in our life. Even though people think that serendipity has a good meaning, the majority find it difficult to believe that serendipity will happen in real life. The concept seems similar to luck; we either get it or we do not. It evokes a sense of unreliability. While it might be true that we cannot entirely rely on it, however, serendipity is something that we may believe in our daily life.

Serendipity is a lovely word. When people first read or hear it, they might think it is a gracious or elegant word. Serendipity itself was used first by Horace Walpole, who was an English writer, in his letter on 28 January 1754. The etymology of the word “serendipity” was taken from the Persian Fairy Tales called “The Three Princes of Serendip”. The fairy tale conveys the story of three young princes set on a journey where they always discover something unexpected along the way (Zafarris, 2017). It is actually difficult to pinpoint the exact meaning of serendipity. Merriam-Webster said that “Serendipity is the faculty or phenomenon of finding valuable and or agreeable things not sought for.” (Merriam-Webster, 1996). Based on Collins dictionary, “Serendipity is the luck some people have in finding or creating interesting or valuable things by chance.” (Collins Dictionary, 2007). Even though there are various definitions of serendipity, all of them refer to the good things that surprisingly happened in life. It is not something that we try to chase down, yet it will catch us off guard and bring us joy.

Serendipity always happens around us. We might not notice it sometimes because people tend to focus on achieving their goals. It is understandable because what is life without purpose? Yet, along the way, it seems like we gradually cannot grasp the meaning of life itself. People end up trying to chase things that society deems “good” for humanity. Most people genuinely believe that the only way to have a good life is by trying to chase and achieve “good things” such as money and power. Not only chasing it for ourselves, but people also try to bring a higher stake by comparing their achievements with other people. Somehow, this life turns into a racing competition. In this world that rotates really fast, we tend to forget that there is a time when we must stop for a while and take a deep breath. If we are only busy looking for particular things, we will never see other things hidden beneath. It is only when we stop for a while that we will be able to see all of the good things that have already surrounded us. You might be surprised to see that we will miss many things if we keep racing. All those good little things and blessings are around us. They are the symbols of serendipity.

Serendipity might happen in the most unexpected way, yet it does not mean that it is a bad thing. There is a quote, “after the storm, here comes the rainbow”. Serendipity is also like that. It will not always be preceded by a good time. Sometimes, a good thing will be preceded by something that people deem bad. There will be painful experiences or failures that happened. However, then, we will gain something better. For example, maybe someone does not get accepted into the college that they want, but then that person will enter another college and probably find many good things within, such as great friends and valuable lessons. In addition, that person might enjoy their life much better in this new environment. This example shows the meaning of serendipity. That person does not get what they want in life, but there is something better that happens unexpectedly.   

Serendipity is the symbol of hope. It acts as a reminder that even if life seems hopeless, there is something good that might happen around the corner or even has already existed in our surroundings. All we need to do is stop for a while, look around, and see all of those serendipities that have already perched softly around us.  


Author: Alvita Utomo Putri 

Editor: Alma Anindita 



Collins Dictionary. (n.d.). Citation. In dictionary. Retrieved April, 19, 2021, from

Meriam-Webster. (n.d.). Citation. In dictionary. Retrieved April, 19, 2021, from

Zafarris, Jess (2017, December). The Etymology of “Serendipity”. Useless Etymology. Retrieved from,looking%20for%20on%20their%20adventures.

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