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Saturday, January 10, 2015

The Sound of Two Eggs Cracking

Aside from what was probably an acute Addisonian crisis last October and also a patch of skin cancer, my health has been fairly stable for a while now. My tests have been good and I have my routine down with meds and hormones. However, an old symptom returned two days ago and continued through yesterday: complex auditory auras.

In a nutshell, here is what happens:

1) You hear a sound.

2) Hours, days, or months later you "hear" it again, even though it didn't sound the second time.

Say you are cracking eggs over a bowl. That's a distinctive sound. Later in the day you hear someone else cracking eggs in the kitchen. You go to investigate. You still hear the eggs cracking, but no one is in the room. The kitchen is clean and the eggs are in the fridge. You still hear the eggs cracking. Is it in the walls? Is someone playing a joke on you, setting up speakers in the cabinets which play the sound of eggs cracking? You hear the sound exactly the same as when it happened for real. You are not "remembering" how it sounded. No, you are "hearing" it, in your ears, and the sound is coming from somewhere outside your body.

That's an auditory aura. You know it isn't, and yet it is.

A complex auditory aura is just that: more complex and complete, often musical, and they tend to occur with trained musicians. I have heard whole strands of music playing before, outside my body, mostly pieces I didn't recognize. This means they were original pieces my brain was inventing on the spot. Oh, for software that can transcribe freely from thoughts!

Anyway, this is what happened two days ago:

MJ went to the store to buy groceries (we needed eggs). I took a shower. When I was drying myself off, I heard the the garage door opening, then the rumble of MJ's car pulling in, then then the familiar sweeping sound of the back door swinging open. I heard MJ stepping inside, surely with bags of groceries in both arms and in need of my assistance unloading the car.

"Hey, Doll!" she called up the stairs.

"Be right down!" I shouted.

I finished toweling off, threw on some clean sweatpants and a shirt, and ran down the stairs.

The back door was closed. Nothing was on the kitchen counter.

I opened the back door and looked into the garage.


I picked up my phone and checked MJ's location on our "Find My iPhone" app. She was still at the store, ten miles away.

I find these little episodes amusing, and so far they haven't driven me crazy. Sometimes it feels like a movie where a scene plays out one way, then another. In one scenario, MJ comes home with the eggs. In another, she doesn't. When the auras happen, I have to keep reminding myself of what is real -- like, for real, not faux real -- and what are just auditory auras, those perfect imposters created by my own brain. This is karmic payback, I just know, for all the practical jokes I have played on others.

The silver lining for me is that, unlike someone who hears voices IN their head, these sounds seem to be thankfully OUTside of me. I never get to the point where I'm in the corner of a room, curled in fetal position and stuttering about CIA people planting a chip in my head.

No, it's just amusing, my take on most of (my own) life, anyway.

Auditory auras. How odd.