June 15th, 2008


I have an ear infection. It came in a set with the runny nose, achy body, and cough. However, it gets special status because the doctor said, upon looking in my ear, “You win antibiotics!” As if that were some exciting prize.

Three times a day I swallow a yellow and brown capsule of faith. Ten days are supposed to do it. Here on day six, not much has changed. In fact, I think I feel worse than I did yesterday.

Complaining is boring, so I will conclude that I have done enough. Reflection is sometimes equally boring, but I haven’t felt up to much else.

I can’t hear very well right now. As a baby, I had a lot of ear infections. I don’t remember them. I asked my mom when my doctor asked me if I had because she noticed damage. I hear better out of my left ear than my right ear, except that right now my left ear is infected.

I find myself resorting to looking at people who talk to me in hopes of confirming what I think they might be saying. Conversations with the kids, which tend toward the odd anyway, end up in laughter as I try to confirm some extremely weird statement my brain has constructed out of half-heard sounds. I hear rain on the roof when I take a shower. I switch the phone from hand to hand, trying to hear better, to flip up the volume.

Pay attention. It’s one of the four instructions I used to have stuck to my computer. With my ear plugged up, I have to. The question is how to divide my attention between the suddenly loud interior sounds (chewing can be downright disgusting) and the frustratingly mysterious exterior ones (is that the phone?). What does my heart sound like in the middle of the night? What do people really want me to hear?