Sunday, January 20, 2008

Being back at St. Philip's this morning for the first time in a month was a very emotional experience for me. I was about 5 minutes late, so the choir was singing the Gloria when I walked in. All the choir members noticed me and smiled, some discreetly waved. They sounded so good, it touched me in my heart's softest spot. And to think, I mused, they let me sing with them!

I can't describe how much I've missed them and the music. I sat through the whole service without singing until the very last hymn, figuring if I started coughing, I wouldn't disturb anything but the benediction. Afterwards, I went to lunch with Pam and Jean at Amerigo's. My glass of wine didn't zap me today like last week's did.

I finally took down the Christmas tree this morning, and while I worked on it, had an interesting conversation with Mike. He turned the TV on a program with noises that get under my skin real quick - screaming, bombs, guns, sirens, vulgar language, etc. I asked him to please find something else to watch or to turn off the sound. He asked what the name of this condition is that I have and I told him it's called misophonia; certain sounds evoke strong negative reactions, like fingernails on a chalkboard, except with me there are several other sounds that do it. It's the reason I gave him a set of wireless headphones for his birthday, which he has yet to use. He loves war movies, and the history channel's war stories, and I want him to be able to watch what he likes without disturbing me.

OK, he said, I'll try to find something that sounds good to you, except I don't think there is anything that sounds good to you.

Think about it, Honey, I said. You've been married to me for 15 years, so this shouldn't be so hard. If you had to create a soundtrack for one day of my life that would soothe and satisfy, rather than stress and strain, what would be on it?

That's easy, he answered, I would just turn on one of those soft music channels that you like and let it play all day.

And that's it? That's all I would hear?

Well, maybe some Hardball and Countdown, too, he added. But that's all I can think of that you enjoy.

Oh, come on, I chided, you can do better than that.

A conversation with Pam and Jean?

OK, what else?

Your favorite sound is my telling you I'm leaving and won't be back for several hours, he added, but I'm not sure how to work that in if I'm in charge of the whole day's soundtrack.

With that, I let it drop. It's obvious that some folks are impossible to please and I'm fast becoming one of them. Even I feel sorry for the poor man sometimes.

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