14. Trust your instincts.
Two weeks ago, you fell off the jungle gym at school. I took you to the doctor and you had your first x-ray. Five long hours later, the doctor's office called back and said your elbow was not fractured or dislocated. I knew they were wrong. You suffered all night long and in the morning I called them back. I took you in again, they reduced your elbow and we heard the "pop!" Within 30 seconds you were 100% better. Your elbow was dislocated for 24 hours. And I knew. I knew it wasn't just a bruise.
We all have instincts. Our gut talks to us, whether it is about our children, other people, places or situations. Many things try to talk over our instincts. Our peers, authority figures, society's expectations, even love make this voice hard to hear. But it is incredibly important that we listen hard. This voice, our instincts, tells us what we need to know, whether we want to hear it or not. The sooner we learn to listen and trust this voice, the better off we are.