It’s been a while since I posted one of my random musings, and I ran across one that I’ve never shared before. But before I get to that…be watching for some exciting news about Born in Darkness! Like, oh I don’t know, maybe a cover??? 😉 I don’t have an exact release date yet, but (Lord willing) the release will be mid-April at the latest. It’s getting to close!!!
And now, for my musing…
What is the sense you can’t imagine losing? Which one would break you with its absence? We always think of what it would be like to be blind or deaf: we ask questions in icebreakers about which one we value more, or which we’d rather lose given the choice. We see characters in books and movies who are without sight or hearing, we may even know people in real life who are deaf or blind. Smell and taste are usually ignored in these sorts of “what if” scenarios, though anyone who’s had a bad cold has a hint of what it would be like living without these interconnected senses.
I truly can’t imagine what it would be like living without seeing the world around me, or without hearing the voice of my loved ones or the sound of rain against the tin roof. Sometimes I play around by imagining how different my life would be, how I would have to change and adapt if one day I couldn’t see or hear. And I hate colds when food is tasteless and my nose is so stuffed up I can’t smell a single thing. But even given this, the one sense I truly can’t imagine living without, the one loss that I think might break me, is touch. Touch is ignored so much in what I’ve seen of speculation and what if’s, but truly the idea of losing it terrifies me.
If I lose my sight, if I never again see my Mom’s face or the rainclouds sweeping across the sky or the words on the page of a book, I would mourn. But I would survive. I could still know my Mom’s love when I feel her arms wrapped around me, when I sense her warmth and love envelop me. I could sense the coming storm with the touch of the wind and cool shadow slipping over me. I could learn braille and discover how to see words with my fingertips.
If I lost my hearing, if I forever lost the laughs of my friends and family or the cacophony of millions of water droplets crashing against stone and earth or I never again heard my favorite songs, I would mourn. But I would survive. I could still know my loved ones’ joy with the squeeze of a hand or that strange feeling of light that permeates any room filled with laughter. I could feel those droplets’ power by putting my hand in their path, by letting them slip across my skin as they continue on their journey. And music…music would be a hard thing to lose. But then touch forms its own kind of music: the whisper of wind across your face, the gentle electricity of hands intertwined, the vibrations of a cat purring, the warmth of sunlight, the chill of snow, feet on soil, hands outstretched to catch the rain…the inexplicably powerful comfort that comes from a simple hug.
But imagine never again being able to feel. Never sensing the wind or the sun or the grass beneath bare feet. Never feeling a hand in yours, or arms wrapped around you…never again having that comfort of another person beside you, silent and understanding, holding you as your world falls apart. Never again having the warmth of blankets, or the softness of pillows. Even the small pains of everyday life: stubbing your toe, knocking your hand against a door, scratching your arm, grabbing a coffee cup that’s too hot, wincing as the chill of winter hits your face…we may think we’d be glad to have these pains gone, but how much would we miss them if they weren’t there? Yes, they hurt. No, they aren’t pleasant in the moment. But every little ache and pain testifies that we are alive. To not feel would be mean being made of stone, cut off from what makes us participants in this often-violent dance surrounding us. And I wonder, would a life without that really be a life at all?