Discuss the Butterfly Effect & mention a Taxi or an Uber
Sally and Gina were the best of friends. They grew up next door to each other, attended the same grade, spent every school vacation together, and were close enough to be sisters. Life in their small home town had been full of love, stability, and companionship. They never compared themselves to each other. They liked the same things, did the same things, and shared all their secrets. People in town would call them twins, inseparable.
“We’re going to grow up, get married and live in the same house with our kids and families.” Both girls would say with wide smiles and enthusiasm. “
Just you wait,” Gina would ensure, “We’ll die together too. Sisters till the end.”
“I love you Gina,” Sally smiled, her green eyes sparkling.
“And I love you Sally,” Gina reciprocated.
Gina and Sally stayed like this through high school. They were both excited about college and the prospect of adventure. Unfortunately they were not accepted to the same schools, but they promised nothing would change their feelings. After graduation they would move to the same town, work in the same job, and grow old together… just like they planned.
Sally struggles with some of her courses. It took her an extra year to graduate. Gina needed to work at an outside job to help pay for her school dorm. The girls wrote, but rarely, and time seemed to crawl on by.
Sally found a job at a data processing firm in New York and met a man who could keep up with her analytical mind. They dated for six months and got married, settling in a small apartment near work for convenience.
Gina went to Europe to study art and explore the great museums of the classic painters. She learned to speak three languages and attended gala openings and art exhibits, meeting imaginative, creative people who loved talking about existentialism and modern mediums of expression. She and her girlfriend moved to New York where she opened up a gallery.
Sally stopped at her favorite café every morning to get a Late on her way to the office. Gina stood behind Sally and two other patrons flipping through her phone. Sally pays for her drink and leaves, the two women never even see each other.
Gina cries out in pain as the last glass window in her gallery shatters from the heat of a fire. All of her work is gone in an instant. Sally cries out as the doctor tells her to push down hard. The baby’s head is crowning.
Gina moves down to Atlanta to start over and try again. Sally and her new family return to upstate New York and buy a small house in Sally’s hometown to be close to her parents. Sally and her husband begin to have problems and they divorce within five years of the move.
Gina has moved from art to music and now operates a popular club in Atlanta. She is doing very well and has a lot of friends. Her life is fast, furious, and fun. She hasn’t settled down with anyone since her last girlfriend, but she is never in need of company. Sally takes a job at the local school and teaches third grade. It gives her a chance to spend more time with her daughter and makes her feel like she makes a difference.
Gina hears that her mother has died and returns home to make arrangements. She stands at the door of the funeral parlor next to her silent alcoholic father and tries not to cry.
“Gina?” Sally says softly.
Both women, now in their forties, do not recognize each other, yet they cry and hug as if they are eight again. The nostalgia is strong, and they spend hours talking about their childhood, their dreams, and the topsy turvy turns their lives have taken.
Days later, while Gina climbs into a taxi that will take her to the airport, Sally waves and wipes a tear from her cheek. They are both so different now. They barely have anything in common yet still feel like sisters. Gina waves back and tries not to cry.
They made no promises to stay in touch. They made no plans for future get togethers. Sally returned to her teaching and Gina returned to Georgia. Sisters in heart, but miles apart. Twins in memory only.
©Rebecca R. Grusendorf
The butterfly effect, or chaos theory is an equation used by scientists, mathematicians, programmers, and astrologers to predict the outcome of an event. A computerized version of fortune telling… I suppose. While learning about the history of this process and the people behind it’s discovery, I found myself appreciating the complexity of it, but also the beauty of its unpredictable nature. In fact, it is said that the unpredictability proves that something is predictive…
Isn’t that a contradiction? (Scratches head and smiles. Confused, but curious)
Mathematicians have found that they can only predict an outcome by a small fraction. The further into the future they look, the harder it is to foretell what will actually happen. Add to this any number of anomalies and the possible projected path changes even more.
What I find fascinating is how the divergent paths never seem to cross each other, but move parallel, like mirrored paths with only a miniscule amount of space between them.
Sally and Gina are my example of this mirrored path. They start at the same place, then take small steps in different directions. Steps so small that they are neighbors and do not see it. Then the paths get wider apart as more differences occur. So that by the end… they are more dissimilar than alike.
I am no scientist, but I have dabbled, in the past, with fortune telling and trying to predict outcomes so that I could find hope when things looked very grim. More often than not, those fortunes were false and may explain why I tend to live more in the now than in tomorrow. But I do see the significant advantages to such scientific study. And since I tend to observe people, I find those same patterns in human behavior that occur in systems such as astrology, computers, and math.
There are many, way smarter than me, who can explain it better. I hope you’ll seek them out if you want to know more. Below are a few of the resources I used.
Thank you for reading and sharing this time with me. God Bless, Rebecca
4 thoughts on “Divergence”
Incredible writing!! Funny how two paths can start out the same and take their own twists and turns. KUDOS, Earthling!!
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Thank you Marvin. It was a fascinating journey 🙂
[…] Rebecca Grusendorf […]
Funny how life’s steps affect us all differently
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