The Loud House

I don’t like loud environments. Too many sounds and conversations all at once can overwhelm me. The sounds converge into a looming cloud of unintelligible noise, crowding out any thoughts. Spending months in isolation has done little to help my aversion. If anything, I had grown accustomed to the silence. Just me and the hum of the refrigerator. I didn’t really enjoy the silence, the absence of life. Just learned to accept it.

After a few months of solitude, I decided to leave the peace of my own apartment to visit family. It had been over a year since I’d last seen my mom, sister and nephew and I was dying to see them again. I speak to my mom regularly but that did not prepare me for what I was about to walk into. I’ve always known that my mother was kind of loud. Just her personality. What I had forgotten was how loud. While she was introducing me to her new pets, it seemed like her voice was turned to 100 and someone lost the remote. Much like the tv in the living room. You could hear her talking down the hall even though I was sitting beside her on the couch. And, of course, my nephew desperately needed to tell me about Roblox at that very moment. So he tries to shout over my mom. Their two dogs are not ones to miss out on the excitement, so they join in as well. Barking as loudly as possible, hoping to gain anyone’s attention. Last but not least, the cat wants a piece of me as well so he decides to lick me. A different but equally commanding tactic. With my mother complaining about the cat’s wet tail, my nephew ranting about Roblox, the dogs’ incessant barking and pacing, and the cat licking my feet, sensory overload was inevitable.  

This should piss me off. It usually does. In the beginning, it did! But as the days go by the sounds begin to overwhelm me for different reasons. The longer I listen, the more I’m able to pick out my nephew’s excitement, my mom’s laughter, my sister’s sarcastic remarks. I remember what it’s like to be a part of a family. To be loud and enveloped in a family. To belly laugh with no care for what the neighbors think. The overwhelming noise quickly becomes the buzz of a family. And I’ve never been happier.