Why is it so hard to heed the still, small voice?
The one that told me to go straight home because we hadn't put our snow tires on and the roads were treacherous. I had it all planned out. I'm going to stick to 3rd Street and Russell. It was a direct route home on two major roads that avoided the ice and snow pack that, to our inadequate tire tread, may well have been ice. Oh, but it would be really nice to give Micah a ride so he doesn't have to walk home in the cold, over icy sidewalks, I thought not fifteen minutes later. I turned onto 7th Street, abandoning my well laid plan. A weight of regret descended on me as I drove down the dark, slick street. I pushed it aside.
I arrived downtown and found a parking space in front of Coal Creek Tap. I put the car in reverse and turned the wheel to parallel park. My foot instinctively pressed down on the brake. The car didn't stop. I heard a loud CRUNCH from behind. It was the unmistakable sound of bumpers colliding. A group of men sipping pints of beer stared at me through the brewery window. "What an idiot," I imagined them saying to each other.
I turned the car off and remained in the driver's seat. A toxic cocktail of adrenaline and shame coursed through my veins. Were the men still watching? I couldn't bring myself to look. I also couldn't bring myself to get out of the car.
Once the adrenaline wore off and I regained the use of my legs, I got out to inspect the damage. Miraculously, both cars were unscathed. "The bumper did exactly what it's supposed to do," reasoned Micah.
So had my intuition.
I don't know why I ignored my intuition and drove downtown that night. Or earlier that day when I told myself the small publishing company I found online (after a series of what felt like serendipitous events) couldn't possibly want my book. I suspect the two are related. Ignoring my intuition the first time made it easier to push it aside a second time. It's already a difficult voice to hear amidst so many other loud and insistent messages. That, says Maureen Murdock, is why we make time to stop and rest even as the world tells us that doing so will render us nobodies doing nothing. Nothing, that is, except listening for whispers, the ones delivered as on the wings of angels. Whispers that will always lead us along right paths.