Last night during book club, Teresa recommended a book that I am definitely going to read called, "The Gift of Fear" by Gavin De Becker. She said the author talks about how sometimes you'll get an icky feeling about someone. Maybe its a man on the elevator or someone who is trying to sell something at your door. The author says you should trust that icky feeling because more often than not, your instincts are right. It sounds like a very interesting book.
I have had some of those experiences where someone I was interacting with seemed "off." Thankfully, I have never been a victim of a crime as a result of one of those people. Usually, I listen to my gut. I have gotten off elevators at wrong floors because someone in there was creeping me out. I have driven around my block several times because it seemed like a car was following me and I didn't want them to know where i lived.
The discussion at book club made me remember one time when my instincts were really off. I was a young girl, maybe 11 or 12. My dad worked for an architectural firm in downtown Toledo. I thought that it was a really scary part of town. After being in truly scary parts of Detroit, I have come to realize that there isn't a scary part of Toledo. But, in my 11 year old mind, we were in grave danger every time we went to my dad's office. He and I would often go on Saturdays. He would do work and I would play with the office supplies. Every time we'd go home, I would try and hurry as fast as we could back to the car before the bad guys could get us. But fast as we could go was not very fast because my dad walked with crutches at the time. He was very slow. I used to imagine that men in big vans would pull up as we were hobbling along the sidewalk and grab me and kick him and he would fall and I would be taken away and he would be lying there unable to do anything. My imagination was very vivid! So, one Saturday, we are headed for the car but this time, Dad wants to bring home several boxes full of junk. So I am pushing a cart of boxes towards our car and we are going slowly and my worst nightmare comes true. A clunker car pulls up next to us and two big, black men hop out and start walking in our direction. I remember thinking, "This is it. I'm dead. My dad is dead. It's over." The men approached us and asked if they could help. !!! I was shocked. They loaded the boxes in the car and helped us take the cart back up to my dad's work. We got in the car and pulled away and I breathed a sigh of relief. We were safe. I'm glad I was wrong about those men.
I'm also glad for "instinct" or "gut feelings" or "promptings" that I have that have not been wrong. Thanks, Teresa, for the great book suggestion.
2 days ago