Gut Feel

Once again the amazing Julia Rosien points me in the right direction (it’s like she knows what she’s doing or something…) She recently tweeted a link to a blog entry by Erika Nepoletano on listening to your gut. Now, I fancy myself as someone who tries to listen to his gut as often as possible. It’s usually right. Not always, but enough that I have learned to trust it. I love my gut. I feed it steak as often as possible.

After reading Erika’s wonderful story I thought about all the times my gut has come through (even after more than a few nights of treating my gut like a test kitchen and drowning it in alcohol and jalapeno nachos):

  • My first real kiss
  • My first real job
  • My first *ahem* time
  • Picking a University
  • Meeting my now wife for the first time (at University. See? I told you my gut was good)
And this one…

Back in 2009 my wife and 2 children had been living in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada for almost 5 years. We were a good 5 hour drive from my family in Toronto and a good 6.5 hour drive from my wife’s family in Woodstock (only 60 minutes from Waterloo – where my wife and I first met).

On March 13, 2009 (my 35th birthday), while my wife and daughter were in the Dominican for a girls getaway, my father-in-law David called to tell me that my wife’s brother Ryan had died. Tragically, accidentally, and well before anyone should have to leave this earth, he was gone.

On June 24, 2009 I received a phone call from a headhunter about a job back in Waterloo with the interview to happen on July 2nd. I was going to be at the beach with my family and my wife’s parents on July 1st for Canada Day, and the cottage was less than 3 hours from the interview, so I was seriously considering it.

There was much discussion between my wife and I over the complication and risks associated with moving our quite comfortable life from Ottawa back to Southern Ontario, but in the end it was my gut that told me what to do. Even before I went to the interview and well before I had any decision to make, my gut was telling me, “DO IT”.

On Canada Day after all the festivities had wound down, David took me aside and wished me good luck on my job interview (he’s good people). At that moment I shook his hand and gave him a hug and I promised him that I would bring his daughter and his grandchildren back home. I guaranteed it.

After two and half hours of driving in July with no air conditioning (and in a suit), three and a half hours of interviews with 2 Managers, 2 Team Leads, and Human Resources, and another two and a half hour drive back to the cottage, I was sipping a nice Shiraz on the beach. A little thank you to my gut, who does enjoy the grape very much as it turns out.

On July 13, 2009 – exactly 4 months after my bother-in-law died – I received a letter of offer for the job in Waterloo.

Exactly two months after that, and exactly 5 months to the day after Ryan’s death, and on my wife’s birthday! (August 13) the Government of Canada created a new agency with an office in Kitchener a mere 17 minutes from my office in Waterloo.

On August 24th, 2009 – exactly 8 weeks after that first phone call from the headhunter – I was working my first day at my new job and had moved into a house in Cambridge (27 minutes from work, and 41 minutes from my wife’s family). 

In September my wife interviewed for a job (at her level even) at that government agency in Kitchener, and on November 2nd she had her first day on the job.

We’ve been here for almost 2 years, we’re both still at our jobs and loving it, and my wife and I and our two children get to see my wife’s family practically any time we want. Everyone is smiling, and I’m presently enjoying a nice Shiraz as I edit this post.

Trust your gut. It knows. You can thank it later.

Say something!