By the time I was 24, I was married and expecting my first child. We lived out in the country, so going to town to run errands was a planned event and with a list. If something wasn’t purchased, most generally, the item would have to be put on the list again for the next trip.
On this particular trip to town, I needed to pick up a spool of red thread, but I had forgotten to bring a piece of the material I was using with me. I needed an exact match. I didn’t want to wait until my next trip to make the purchase because my ability to finish the project had already been delayed by several days already. The thought of having to wait several more days if not a week displeased me.
At the time, I’d been reading a lot of books about intuition, how we are all born with an intuitive ability but that for most people, it remains underdeveloped because it wasn’t understood at the time. While it was known that women were often seen as being more intuitive than men, the science wasn’t clear at the time as to why. That science would come decades later, but at that time, a woman’s intuitive was something to joke about.
I was curious about my own intuition, but I wasn’t sure how to develop it. While books spoke about it, there weren’t how-to books on the market back then as there are now. At least, these books weren’t in the stacks of the public library that I used.
I been wondering if I could develop my intuition, let alone trust it. And now, on this day, I had an opportunity, so I decided to test my intuitive power on red thread. I was down to two possibilities. Thread A was the one that I rationalized was the correct color. I saw the fabric in my mind’s eye. I sincerely thought it was THE thread to buy. Thread B was the one that my intuition was telling me to buy, but I had no rationale behind that feeling. None. I couldn’t base the feeling on a single fact. I thought it looked too dark, that it wasn’t even the right family of shades; it was a wine red, not the more cherry red Thread A was.
Because I didn’t want to take one spool home and discover it was the wrong choice, I decided the best way to test my intuitive powers was to purchase both. Spending even so much as an extra dollar on a limited budget taxed my sensibilities, but I was desperate to have usable thread that evening so I could finish my sewing project. As much as I hated returning items, I decided if I needed, I could return the spool that ended up being the wrong color.
So, I marked the threads lightly on the spool’s ends, marking the one I thought was the true color as A, and marking the one my intuition was telling to buy as B.
When I got home, I was astonished and surprised to find that thread B was a perfect match. It was so perfect, in fact, that when the thread was laid on the material, the thread completely disappeared. I had to look hard to see it. Thread A, which I’d been so sure was the perfect match, was hideously incorrect.
The test was a small one, but my intuition had been correct and convincingly so. The question in my mind now was, how trustworthy would this intuition be on larger purchases or events that had outcomes that were more important, if not downright critical. Would I be able to trust my intuition no matter what?