Editor’s Column: Trust your gut

Niki Turner

Last night I kept smelling air in the house. I know, that sounds weird, but the smell of fresh air in the house in colder weather is very distinct. It’s not something I notice in the summer when the windows are open, but I do notice it when it’s cold outside. Ordinarily I’ll go check all the doors and windows, but last night I didn’t. This morning I discovered one of the super-talented dogs (the 12-year-old lab mix) successfully opened the patio door yesterday. It was open all night, making for a chilly exercise experience today. Why a dog that can open a sliding glass door can’t also close said door is a question for which I have no answer. 

I’m probably hyper-sensitive to that “fresh air” smell, following one incident where a door blew open and a skunk decided to perfume the house, and another incident where an ice dam caused a roof leak and the ceiling in one of my kids’ bedroom collapsed (I also broke my arm that night after slipping on ice created by the same ice dam). Those experiences, and the fact I hate to be cold, have made me a little paranoid about that smell. I should have checked all the doors last night. 

Which brings me to my thoughts today. We all have “spidey-senses” about things. We have them about people who make us vaguely uncomfortable, we have them about weird noises our cars make, and we have them about various things going on around us. More often than not, those senses can be trusted, and provide safety, comfort and protection when we pay attention to them. When we don’t? Well, how many times have you found yourself in unpleasant situations only to look back and realize you “knew” something was wrong but ignored it because you were busy, or tired, or just didn’t feel like dealing with it? 

Trusting your instincts and intuition isn’t always easy, especially if you’ve been programmed to deny them. If someone told you repeatedly that you were just a scaredy-cat, or overly dramatic, or whatever, you might have trained yourself to stifle those spidey-sense alerts to avoid ridicule or just to keep the peace. My open door last night was a reminder to trust those instincts, and to take time to check them out. Better safe than sorry. Or cold. Or worse. Trust your gut.

By NIKI TURNER | niki@ht1885.com