Friday, April 01, 2016

Half laughing, half gritting my teeth.

Years ago, I wrote briefly about the experience of being a synesthete and how I discovered synesthesia. I had kinda always figured that everybody saw the number eight as a nice, round, juicy blueberry color and that Katy Perry tasted like burned cheese and was burnt-orange. It took an NPR story and a conversation with my sister to prove me wrong.

And I had thought about it exactly zero times since. The way you experience the world is the way you experience the world; it's not something you consciously analyze unless something is brought to your attention. Thankfully, my synesthesia (and that of my sister) is not crippling; it's just an interesting party trick. It's utterly consistent and so completely a part of the way I move through the universe that I don't even notice it any more.

Until today. Today, when my pill case showed up from Amazon.

See, my NP got on my ass the last time I saw her (Tuesday) about not being consistent with vitamin D and fish oil and all that stuff. I really need to take certain things every day, I know, but for some reason my hand just floats over the big bottle of fish oil capsules every evening. So she yelled at me a little, and I went home and ordered a seven-day pill organizer. The box for each day has four little compartments, and each box is a different color.


And, dudes and dudettes, this is a problem. Tuesday is lavender when it should be acid green. Sunday is a soft magenta, which does not appear in this set of boxes. Monday is *not* supposed to be purple.

It's bad enough that I got all confused while I was sorting vitamins out. There are some things I'm only supposed to take three times a week, and those went into the wrong boxes. I put all the boxes back together in the holder in the wrong order. It was a physical effort to make the colors match the labels on the boxes.

I am a partial synesthete. I will soon be a partial synesthete with a label-maker, as I relabel all the boxes so that they match, or at least come close to, the days of the week.


Anne said...

Nail polish comes in lots and lots of colors.
Maybe you need to buy a white or clear pill box organizer and make each compartment (or each snap down lid) the right color.
(Seems to me that would be a lot better than dealing with mixed messages.)
Good luck.
And I really enjoy your posts.

RehabRN said...

Now you know why I only use a once a day clear one. Got tired of messing with everything and told my doc "I'm taking it all at night. No exceptions." (I only have 4 to worry about).

The joys of medication planning.

Pam said...

Your story is lovely and amazing to me. I sometimes feel like my perception of the world is the opposite. All my life, my sense of smell has been a little dull, my sense of pitch, meh. I'm the slowest person to find the pulse. And as a musician and a nurse, I crave those abilities. I've been able to improve with practice, of course, but has been a slow process. When I see someone working for whom pitch is clearly evident and patient observation is clear as day, it looks like magic to me.

I know you're a musician too. Do sounds figure into your synesthesia? Does an A taste different than an A-flat? Do they sound different, when played outside of a musical context? Tell me about what you hear!

Anonymous said...

No, no, Sunday is deep blue! (And Friday is orange and Saturday is pale yellow.) I agree, though, that Monday being purple just ain't right.

Nurse Dee said...

I wish my zebra condition was that! That would be neat!

Anonymous said...

Monday - Black
Tuesday -grey
Wednesday - teal
Thursday - brick red
Friday - yellow
Saturday - Orange
Sunday - white

woolywoman said...

I agree with the nail polish . suggest dollar store. and eights are skinny and cherry colored

salsabike said...

I envy you your synesthesia, which I think often makes people great artists.