It’s a high-pitched sound, somewhere between a ringing and a rushing of water. Constantly reverberating in my left ear, it seems to be the movement of fluid through the inner canal. I didn’t think much of the sound until one day last fall when, congested from a virus, I couldn’t tell which way was up.
Turns out occasional vertigo along with the ringing is a symptom of Meniere’s, an ear condition that attacks the inner canal and, as a result, my hearing. In a few months, I’ve lost almost all of the hearing in that ear.
If you stand at a distance and call my name, I look around, confused. Can’t tell what direction you are calling from. At my evening job, this happens almost every night. Must look hilarious.
Treatment is in the works, but in the meantime, I’ve been recording the sensations to share in my fiction. If I can make the reader feel dizzy, confused, disoriented, or distracted by constant sound, then the literary world will seem that much more real. I can confuse or disorient them for effect, as part of a plot, or just to undermine their deductive reasoning.
Not much consolation for hearing loss, but nevertheless, a silver lining.