I am a sensory person – I always have been. I strongly feel that, it is one of the reasons why I turned to select my passion / profession. My heightened senses helps me in my work tremendously and I am thankful for the same.
That also makes me an extremely hands-on person who refuses to learn through other’s experiences. I was a tough kid to raise with this trait so embedded in me. I refused to listen to warnings and till date retain the obstinate attitude of “let me try and fail” rather than “sit back and wonder, if I could do it differently”.
I love the feeling of understanding an object through touch, smell, sight sounds and yes also at times taste. To me, it is like having a conversation with an object and “knowing it better”. I extend it to humans too – where I cannot truly love, unless I know what his lips taste in my mouth, what his touch does to my goose-bumps, how his smell makes me melt and how his sight makes me aware of my own presence in this world. I haven’t known love without such sensory kicking in…
Maybe this is the reason why I still haven’t taken to Kindle – I need books in their physical form. I need to touch the letters, I need to smell the pages – the new or the musky smell, both have a lot to speak about the book’s experience or the lack of it. I like to run my fingers on the spine of the book, over the creases and cracks, over the threads or the staples coming undone and wonder how many times has it being left over turned and what could be the reasons? Often as I picked up books from the library, I remember searching for dog ears, or maybe a pencilled in line, a pressed flower or a tear stain – the emotions that a book has been through. What were the loved parts, how did they appeal to the audience, why did the reader cry – because of the words printed or maybe a call came in just then? Was the rose hidden by a young lover, lest her mother discovers it or was it by an adult just before returning the book – as a sign of letting go of her lost lover?
The smells of old tainted books, the musky, the sweaty, the coffe-licious and also the smell of loneliness of forgotten books on GM’s bookshelf. Have you ever wondered, if books could talk – how much of our sensory would come alive?
I once had shared with a close confidant that I feel words, to know if they associate with me or not. I was given a bewildered look that was followed up with his usual ruffling of my head and a hug – that in turn meant, “Oh you little crazy one”. As I struggled out of his hug-grip, I had protested that it is indeed true, but then had shut up knowing that my explanations would be wasted on him.
Not here but – this is where I can explain and I know stand by the fact that I do “feel words and take time to know them”.
I roll every new word that I encounter on my tongue – I say it aloud and then say it in my head. I spend sometime analysing how it rolls off my tongue. How easily can I pronounce it? Does the sound of it linger in my ears? Does it make me curious to learn about its spelling? What about its etymology – does it origin appeal to me? If it were a person, will I invite it to share a cup of coffee to know more about it’s life’s journey before it landed up in the thesaurus?
It might sound crazy, but that is how I pick words that are “mine” – words that I now unknowingly spin into my important pieces and speeches. Words, that I associate with my comfort and nervousness both. Words, that I use to appear humble and pompous or both often.
I remember one of my ex’s throwing me a challenge to write a draft for the upcoming UN conference without usage of a list of 3 words – my favorites. I had picked up the challenge without batting an eyelid. I failed miserably. My pride did not allow me to give up till I knew, that I would not be allowed any more submission extensions.
I realised then that I am a closed circle person even for words. That, once into my inner circle – be it people, books or words – I find it difficult to make do life without them.
One such word of mine is “holistic” – it is not only the way it rolls of the tongue or sounds in my ear (in my own voice), but also what is stands to represent. I am a strong believer in Karma and the first rule of Karma is “encompassment” – that one should not view actions or reactions in silos. It is all connected. The word too says just that – it seeks to merge all into one, it stands for connecting the dots, it stands for a whole. Most importantly, I didn’t choose the word – the word chose me.
I feel that all of us are chosen by such words in our lifetime – the wait is to discover them.
So, have you found your word? Have you sensed it ever? Do you know how it came to fit into your life?