Riding Life!

Riding Life!
Life is like a wild horse--Unless you ride it, it will ride you! (from the movie: "Princess of Thieves.")

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

C: Elvie

I had a young woman in who had a really bad husband—really bad.  They are now divorced several years and we are still dealing with him and the aftermath.  They seem so paradoxical now, yet by all accounts they looked like a golden couple when they married; perfectly suited for one another.  They had met in church.  He seemed wonderful—courted her.  She is so stable.  A caring young mother with a college education. 

I won’t go into detail about what broke this young couple up because I cannot violate her confidence, but I will say it is unusual and that it would shock you.  You would not dream it up; and certainly she never expected it.  Let me say that in 31 years of practice, I have never seen anything quite like it.  The details indicate a personality/character disorder so ingrained that I have little hope that ex will ever be reformed.  I feel certain that this disorder did not occur after their wedding, during their short marriage.  No, it was lurking there all the time, just not exposed or maybe it just required an intimate relationship to lure it to the surface.

I’ve been dealing with this a couple of years now, and I am convinced of my client’s steadiness and normality.  She has marvelously moved forward, has remarried and seems happy in that new life—if she could only finish up with the details of the old!  I think she is a healthy person.

I found myself wondering how two people, so antithetical to each other, could have gotten together in the first place and when did she know that he was capable of such aberrant behavior?

So, I asked her.  And she said, “Just before we married a little voice started telling me to back out, that I was making a big mistake.  But the plans were finalized, lots of money had been spent, and everyone loved him.  I gave him a good look-over and could find nothing objective to complain about.  And I did love him.  Still, the little voice kept nagging—I knew it was louder than just ‘cold feet.’ But I did not have anything to prove it out, so I ignored it. What was I going to tell everyone?  That a ‘little voice’ told me to back out?”

Ah, the “Little Voice.”  Some years ago my son said, “Mom, you know that little voice you hear sometimes?  I call it ‘Elvie,’ which is from the initials, 'LV.’  Don’t you know that Elvie is always right? Always!”

And I think he’s right.

One client related an Elvie moment to me the other day.  She had been driving home when she heard Elvie insist that she should drop in, unannounced, on her grandmother.  She resisted.  Elvie persisted.  She ignored.  She was tired, Grandmother did not expect her, she didn’t have time…she was later to learn that her grandmother had fallen.  Had she listened to Elvie, she could have saved her grandmother several hours on the floor.  Coincidence or truly Elvie?  I don’t know.

Elvie is a big help in everyday life, too.   Elvie often prompts me in my work.  I’ll be working along on something, then another file will pop into my head unexpectedly.  I have learned from long experience that this means I had better go check on that status—some deadline is about to pass or there is something that I have left unfinished.  I know that it is just my brain keeping track of things—or is it Elvie?  Whatever it is, I don’t ignore it—too risky.

What does Elvie look like?  (What a funny question!)  I dunno; see some ideas scattered through this post.  But I think that it is so interesting that this intuition is pictured as coming through our ears, don’t you?  I guess it is because we process so much information from “outside” through our hearing, and that we perceive Elvie as being an “outside voice.”

Can Elvie lead you astray?  I suppose so, but it’s never happened to me.  Really, guys, I know when my vices are rearing their ugly heads.  I can just tell when I am wanting to do things for the wrong reasons, can’t you?  I don’t think I usually mistake these times for Elvie’s urgings.

What do you think Elvie is?  Is it the voice of God?  Is it instinct or intuition?  Is it a tuning in to some supernatural or “other” plane of which we are normally unaware?  Can we cultivate Elvie’s input in some way?

Do you have an Elvie story you can share?  If so, please do, because I am soooo interested.  In any case, it has been my experience that the picture below contains good advice!  - C


KathyB. said...

You know the DIL I e-mailed you about, the one who has caused so much distress in so many lives? When our son was going to marry her something in me, my "Elvie" kept telling me things were not quite what they seemed and I always had this sinking feeling around her.She and her friends stayed in our home a few days before the wedding and the sinking feeling never left me or my husband, although there was nothing to show us there was a problem. On our son's wedding night my husband and I prayed before we worked up the nerve to approach our son about some concerns we had. We told him that although the wedding was all planned ( we planned and paid for almost everything) he should not feel the need to marry her if he had any concerns. He told us he loved her and wanted to marry her.We never again said anything negative to him and treated her with great love and respect, for we would never want his marriage to fail.

Skip ahead, and without going into any details, "Elvie" should have been heeded. I have many tales about that little voice, as so many others do, and I try to listen even when I don't want to. That "still, small voice" comes especially after prayer regarding any situation and I cannot help but think many times it is God prompting us to listen to him and His wisdom.

KathyB. said...

I meant to say, " on the night before he was married". Obviously he was away with his bride on his wedding night~

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

Great post, C. There is no doubt that it is wise to heed Elvie. I have had so many instances of this small, still voice... at points in my life, I have explained it in different ways... but, I am sure it is a gift from God, however it occurs. Thanks for the reminder to "listen".

Karen said...

Great post, this is so true. I should have heeded that small voice when I was a younger woman.

Vee said...

Yes, I have had "Elvie" moments, but in truth some of them have proven false as false could be. I do believe that the spirit within us speaks and we should heed, especially when it's something easily accomplished...a call, a visit, a comment...that kind of thing. One of my mother's dearest friends told of walking down the aisle with a voice in her head screaming, "Run!" She was very happily married for over sixty years and often laughed over that insistent voice.

Still, I am saddened by this young woman's story and am glad to know that she is well and moving forward.

Suzanne said...

I have learned to heed that voice. My most dramatic Elvie moment actually happened in Arkansas. I was down there visiting my mother and had gotten all the touristy brochures to plan our week together. We went to the diamond mine one day and had a good time. Another brochure touted a "waterfall" south and west of Hot Springs.

It was a long drive out into a rural area. We pulled off the main road and another long drive to the entrance of the area - a state park I believe. There was only one motorhome in the camping area and we continued to drive down a long and twisting road to the "waterfall". There were only three cars in the parking lot (including ours). We walked to the waterfall, which turned out to be a very small and unimpressive sight. I was very aware of the surroundings and there was one family with small children but I did not see anyone who could be connected with that third car. Elvie kicked in - BIG TIME - HUGE TIME. I was totally creeped out and Elvie was saying - there's a problem here. The parents rounded the children up and walked back to the parking lot. I told my mom - we gotta leave, NOW. I've never felt so strongly in my life that we were in danger. When we jumped in the car I immediately locked the doors and drove like a bat outta hell to get out of there. I don't know who or what was lurking but Elvie said it was evil.

Arkansas Patti said...

Elvie was screaming in my ear as I walked down the aisle,"You don't know him!!!" Should have listened. Since then,I pay attention to Elvie.

A bird in the hand said...

I ALWAYS listen to Elvie. I learned the hard way, a very hard way.

I also learned to separate Elvie from Ego. It's easy to mistake Ego for Elvie. So when someone says: My Elvie turned out to be wrong, I tell them that wasn't their Elvie, it was their Ego.

Happyone :-) said...

For me, I believe that the little voice is God leading me. :-)

Melissa said...

That little voice is a powerful voice. May it be heard and listened to by all.

Linda Hibner said...

Like someone else commented, I believe that "Elvie" is often God speaking to us. Some call it intuition or discernment. It is that and more...wisdom and warnings being spoken in our ear.For the 10 years my husband and I did group foster care with mostly teens, it was my husband's "Elvie" that saved many situations. Russ would hear just a bit of a conversation that would raise a red flag and he'd go exploring. Or he'd come to me saying that he had a "feeling" that things weren't as they seemed. I believe that we stopped some run-aways, as well as drug use and maybe even a suicide due to Russ' "Elvie". God doesn't usually send telegrams or use our cell numbers, so "Elvie" is as close as we get to fairly direct communication from Him.

Kathleen From Eggs In My Pocket said...

How I believe in that still small voice..........it has been such a good guide all of these years. Loved reading! blessings,Kathleen

Sandra said...

C -- A very interesting post, and I will forever now think of that small voice as "Elvie"!

I don't have a specific story, but I too have learned to listen to that small voice. And I think that in most cases it is my conscience telling me to do something that is of no obvious benefit to me (or is even an inconvenience) but will benefit someone else. I can't remember a time when I have obeyed "Elvie" and have been disappointed in the outcome.

Thank you for a thought-provoking post.

Iron Needles said...

I have learned that my inner voice is trustworthy and valuable after years of believing that 'everyone else knew better'. A by-product of shaky self-esteem, being a people pleaser, and a female of the times, I believe. I know now my instincts and intuition are good, and there for a reason, and if it feels wrong, it usually is. I have followed up on 'wild' thoughts to make phone calls, to follow up emails, or to send a card and found later it came at 'just the right time'. Go figure.


I drove a semi truck in the Los Angeles area for over 35 years. Many times a still small voice would tell me to slow down, stop or be extra cautious when approaching an intersection. I'm sure that little voice saved me from being involved in many accidents over the years. Truck drivers used to call call it "road savvy" but I chose to believe it was God. ~Ron

Jody Blue said...

I believe we all get the gift but if we choose to harden our hearts and not listen to the still small voice we get to go it alone until we learn and listen.

KathySue said...

I recall my "Elvie" moment on the night before my first wedding...the reservations I talked about with my Daddy. He gave me the speech about "cold feet" and dismissed me. I have wondered many times if it would have made a difference had he given me a "way out"??? I'm not sure I would have listened. No reason to second guess now. Do I think God was nudging me to change my mind....I imagine He was. So, I just have to take what I can from that mistake and hopefully I am more discerning now.

I love the "Elvie" label for this still small voice. I picture my little Holy Spirit wearing an "Elvie" t-shirt.

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