July 1, 2016

Let the Record Reflect: Trusting My Gut

My gut is all I have. This doesn’t discount my family, friends or my faith, because my gut instinct is tied inextricably to all of the above. It’s the second voice that whispers a welcome or a warning in the interest of keeping family, friends and faith intact.

Teaching my daughter to trust her own gut is critical. I won’t always be here to give her the answers she needs. It’s gut-wrenching because I want to give her the right answers, but I know if I do that, she’ll never learn to trust her gut, or make decisions that grow into convictions.

Most of the time, I end up sprawling myself strategically along the sidelines, allowing a toe or a foot or a half-shin to cross over into her decision-making territory while I pray she hears her gut and God’s voice and listens to them both.

You’d think I was an expert at gut-listening-gut-heeding.

You’d be wrong.

Let the record reflect that I turned a blind eye, deaf ear and mute tongue during the relationship that was anything but good for me. My gut had turned hoarse from screaming to deaf ears for five long years.

Let the record reflect that I did listen to my gut in a different relationship – a healthy one – although one without a promise of future stability. I hated my gut for pushing me to ask the million dollar question after two and a half years in: Are we ever gonna get married? We weren’t. We didn’t. He was miserable about it and so was I.

Let the record reflect that years later, my gut elbowed me in the gut about a cute, quirky, intellectual friend-of-a-friend I met by happenstance. Then I loved my gut. That guy’s been my husband, parent-partner, advisor, friend, entertainer and protector for nearly fifteen years now.

Let the record reflect there was a time when I allowed the almighty dollar to drown out my gut’s urging. While my gut, not completely unlike the Amityville Horror house hissed GET OUT of that job. I was like, Shut up, Gut. I have diapers to buy, tuition to pay and a perfect childhood to create. Later, my gut shook its head with a winsome, relieved smile when I finally left that job, a shell of myself, forty pounds heavier and world-weary.

Let the record also reflect that I ended up landing in a good job, with good people and where I learned to relegate the almighty dollar to not-so-almighty status. But I’m still not sure how my gut felt about it all because I was in too much of a hurry to get back to full-time work to listen.

Let the record finally reflect that as good of place, job and people, my gut poked, prodded and toddler-whispered which is basically talking out loud into someone's ear while slobber flies everywhere:


Seriously, Gut? SHADDUP. Shaddup NOW, because I’ve only been here three months. THREE!

My gut rolled its eyes and I rolled my eyes right back.

Then I reviewed the record.

My gut wasn’t smug, but the look it gave me made me stop and think of all the times I didn’t listen to it the first time around.

I decided this time, right now, at this age of clocking in at nearly the half-century mark, I will listen to my gut the first time it poked, prodded and whispered (outside of the time I listened to my gut about that one guy).

So, here’s to the new adventures and conversations my gut and me will have about whatever the future holds.



  1. Let's do breakfast in Mequon soon, we can fill our guts with good stuff whilst plotting world domination.

  2. Here's to new adventures, indeed! Good luck, Rochelle!

    (I am terrible at the gut listening, but I might try to listen more closely.)

    1. Gut listening is HARD.

      ...and thanks.

  3. I love the style in which you presented this, and I love the way you tend to your instinct. This is a good choice, I am so grateful you are able to make it, and I'm positive you are too. Also, the gut=listen about your quirky friend of a friend? LOVE IT. xoxoxo Here's to a summer lunch soon with me, I hope I hope I HOPE. xoxoxoxo

    1. Thank you SO much Alexandra. SO much.
      My gut says it would love lunch with you too!