I was just sitting outside having lunch with my Mum, and I said to her “Geez, it’s a noisy day!”Mum replied, “What do you mean?”. “Well”, I replied, “I can hear everything! I can hear the birds chirping to each other, I can hear someone hammering wood, the children yelling and squealing at their school down the road, the leaves rustling in the wing, a rooster cock-a-doodle-dooing in the distance, the noise of trucks in the distance, and you chewing. And no sound is any more vibrant than the other, I can’t focus on one and block the rest out, it’s just loud outside!” She looked at me and asked whether my heightened hearing was compensating for a loss in another one of my senses?
I don’t think so.
I smoke, I have done so for half my life. I know this has lessened my olfactory and taste senses. I know this because when I quit smoking for a few months I felt assaulted by smells like I never had remembered being so before. I also know this because during this period I didn’t put so much salt and pepper on my meals.
So I sat outside with my Mum for a little while longer, and excused myself to go back inside. I felt an odd pressure in my head which alleviated when I got inside and away from all that noise. Also, removing myself from the sunlight and into my dully lit house was a relief. Becoming educated about sensory issues has definitely made me become more aware of them. It was interesting to take note of everything I could hear at one time and notice how this affected me, and know why.
I’ve never really enjoyed being outside for extended periods of time. My negative inner critic would previously shout LAZINESS! But now? She’s taking a little rest due to this new information. She’s being a bit more gentle with me now.
I’ve been thinking a little more on hearing sensitivity and wondered why loud noises don’t bother me so much. Three examples; I can shoot a gun or be in proximity of a gun being shot and it not worry me, I love fireworks, and I love thunderstorms. I think it may come down to pitch? Because, I can’t stand squealing or whistles, they give me physical chills! And also, because the three examples are somewhat controlled loud noises, there’s less anxiety around noises which you can prepare for than say a loud noise you are not prepared for that makes you jump, and your heart race. Fireworks and lightning excite my visual sense. As bright as fireworks and lightning are; they illuminate the darkness – I am struggling to explain the beauty in it. They’re not assaulting like strobe lights in the dark.
Just an interesting observation of mine as I continue along on this journey.. 😊