Yes, the Earplugs!

Yes, the Earplugs!

I wanted to write about the earplugs for quite some time but I was waiting to take a shot of those earplugs I have at home… However, I haven’t taken a single shot of them, I’ll do that later. It doesn’t matter that much.

Suzanne commented on the post What it really feels like few days ago. She wanted to give me some advice: “I am 55 and have live this my whole life. I could say a lot, but what I really wanted to tell you as I read this post, was to buy some earplugs. It changed my life. I have probably a hundred pair. I cut them a little shorter than they come. That way, they are a little less obvious when I wear them. I keep several pair (always!)in my pockets, purse, kitchen drawer and in the car. I would be unable to attend church, shop, or do countless other activities without them. Oh, and bathroom fans.”

I replied:   “Oh Suzanne,
I should really write about my experience with earplugs.
I can’t wear them any more. I used them for years but I don’t know really how and why but my ears can’t stand those anymore. It’s painful for me to wear them, I mean physically painful.”

So, this morning, I was involved again in a conversation about the earplugs. People recommend them all the time. And, of course, I recommend them. They’ll give you a bit of peace.

I can’t remember if I ever slept 8 hours straight without awakening, if I ever had a firm, nice, good, refreshing night sleep. I probably did when I was a child, but I can’t remember when I started to wake up from a stupid, small noises.

I would wake up, my heart would start pumping fast and my nerves would tremble. Can’t stop the physical respond of my body to those sounds. I wrote about my awakenings here . People who sleep well don’t really know how lucky they are. They take it for granted probably. As it’s the normal thing in life. And it is normal that you sleep well. It’s not normal to wake up on every  tiny single sound there is.

Until the earplugs came to my life I was sleeping with some heavy pillows on my head and  hands firmly attached to ears. I actually, again, don’t remember how on the Earth I discover about existence of the earplugs and I don’t remember when that was, but I do remember when I first put them in my ears.

After a few minutes with those things in my ears I thought my head will explode! The pressure I felt was overwhelming. Oh my God, my head will just burst like a balloon! I felt like my head was growing, spreading all over the place, it was huge, enormous!

But the pressure was nothing compared to what I felt right there. I felt silence. That was an wonderful overwhelming feel. I felt silence. I couldn’t believe! I cried. I fell in love.

Actually I couldn’t sleep that night. Funny, isn’t it? I couldn’t sleep because of that pressure I felt in my head. But, if someone can be happy for not sleeping, I was. More then happy. I could not sleep and not hear! I wasn’t nervous, I wasn’t angry, I was staring at that ceiling perfectly happy, enjoying my newly discovered silence and waiting for my head to became the best friend with the new addition to my body.

I also remember that second night. I slept 8 hours straight, without awakening! I realized that’s not a fairy tail, people really do sleep without awakenings. I know that I spent that whole day thinking about the feel the normal people feel when they woke up out of a good night sleep. I was energized. I was light. I was in a great mood. I was ready to go anywhere and do what ever! Oh, what a great gift! A good night sleep! Now I  also know how that looks like.

I used them for years. I tried every kind and every manufacturer I could find, every color (stupid colors I must say, don’t really understand way they made them that colors mostly) and every material. Where ever I go, they go with me.  Contacts and earplugs! A must for me!

Then, one day, my friend at the time (my husband now) gave me some military earplugs. I just know that his uncle brought those from Iraq. Unfortunately I don’t know anything more to tell you about them. If you have some friends in the army or know someone who knows someone … you can ask them. I could just tell you about my experience with them.

They were awesome!

The moment I put those, was the moment of the beginning of the end of my interaction with the earplugs.

Confused?

They were so much better then all the rest of the earplugs I used. Talking about my head was going to explode… That was nothing compared to these. But I didn’t care, that pressure will go away. Those earplugs were made by God itself! I couldn’t hear a thing I was already panicking the first night because I knew that they wont last forever. I just got three pairs of them.

I wore them much longer then I should and after some time I had to ditch them. I loved them. It was hard to say good buy to them. Seriously. I was Sinead O Connor crying and singing “Nothing compares too you!”

After them, the military kind I mean, nothing helped any more. I could hear almost everything with the other earplugs on. I was still using them and they still helped me…Well, kind of… There were no other earplugs good enough for me.

Somewhere along the time, after years of using all kinds of earplugs, my ears started to hurt. I felt pain, physically. I had ignored it as long as I could ignore that pain. Feeling the physical pain is much easier to tolerate then trying to tolerate those Miso sounds.

 The amount of the pain increased quickly. I came to the point that I can’t use them any more. And I’m very sorry for that. Last time I used them was 3.5 years ago when I had to stay in a hospital for some time due to my first, difficult pregnancy.

So that was my long time relationship with the earplugs. I heard Debbie recommends “Heroes ” brand. I never tried them but, she said they’re worth of trying. Why not?

Edit to add: Because I’m into photography I finally took a shot of earplugs I found in my home. I changed the color of two pairs and the box. Can you guess which pair is color changed? I hated colors of earplugs.

Author Description

I love photography and learning about it. I'll try and fail that's for sure, but sometimes, I hope, I'll do good. As for the Misophonia part of the blog, I'll write honestly about my experiences and feelings, trying to help myself and others who feel the same way as I do and maybe to raise some awareness about this condition. All written here is just and only my opinion.

2 Responses to “Yes, the Earplugs!”

  1. Suzanne Rackliffe February 22, 2014 - Reply

    Oh, I am so sorry for your pain in wearing the earplugs. I could relate to your experiences, as it truly is a love-hate relationship I have with them. There are days I can’t stand the pressure, and I find other ways to cope. But most often I find the discomfort much more tolerable than the alternative. And some days they don’t bother me at all. I understand completely though if you got to the point where it was not an option. So much of this affliction is just so hard to define. I applaud your efforts to share your experiences and reach out to others. It can’t be easy, and you are very brave.
    A note on the earplugs not completely blocking out all noise: That is one of the reasons I wear them. I can often fake that I am actually comfortable in a group setting if I have in my half-size earplugs in both ears. It softens many of the triggers just enough that they only annoy me, but within the range of “almost tolerable”. I can still work at being part of the conversation, or listen to my heartbroken sniffling teenage daughter after a hard day. Truth is, I still have to limit my exposure to the muffled sounds, but it buys me a little time. A little connecting time.
    Best wishes to you in your journey. You sound clever and determined, and I am confident that you will discover coping strategies that will help you achieve the important things that hope for in your future.

    • mmaria February 22, 2014 - Reply

      Suzanne,
      first of all, Thank you! I take every comment and every word as a support.
      It was exactly the same for me about discomfort you mentioned.
      About me being brave, trust me, I’m not brave, I just needed to say something or I’ll go nuts. There was and still is a hope that my experiences will help someone… If I didn’t get the support from you guys, I wouldn’t probably continue to write. I would lost the courage and fight this in much aggressive way.
      You’re right that this isn’t easy, I’m frightened sometimes with what I found myself I just typed… but it helps me so much! It brings me more smiles in during the day.
      Thank you again! Hope we’ll “see” you again during this journey!

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