Lucy In The Sound Dome With Diamonds

I’m not about to debate the true meaning of ‘Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds‘ by the Beatles, but it sprang to mind when thinking about writing this post.  Am I seeing diamonds in the sky?  No.  But the popular belief that the song has something to do with drug-laced hallucinations is appropriate.

No, I’m not doing drugs.  Well, not anymore than the small mountain of prescribed psychotropic and pain medication.  I am, however, living my life in a sound dome.  Where I go, it goes.  It’s actually very clever.

The connection for me is that I’ve been having hallucinations for six weeks now.  I am hearing music that is not there, nor can anyone else hear it.

I’m not seeing things, but I am hearing plenty.  Plenty of music, that is.  And while we’re about what ‘is‘ and ‘isn’t‘… I’m not psychotic (confirmed by a doctor!).  This is nothing to do with my mental health, although it’s fair to say that as time goes on, it is having a great effect on my mental health.  The music hallucinations I am having are related to my ears, and not some psychotic illness.

If you want to know more about music hallucinations, you can do your own googling.  What I want to talk about is how these auditory hallucinations are doing my head in right now.

You might think that six weeks of music that is almost constant in my waking hours, would be welcome, especially if you’re not having to pay for it.  But actually this is anything but welcome.  Let me explain:

  • I don’t have any control over when it plays, or at what volume;

  • I don’t have any control over what type of music plays.  Right now, I being inundated with full ensemble, church music.  Yes, that’s hymns, mostly with orchestra, choir and at times, a full pipe organ.  It’s not the type of music I would choose and actually having such a full exposure to this in my earlier life, it really does nothing but press emotional buttons;

  • I don’t have control over the quality.  I regularly hear wrong notes and off-key singing.  I regard myself as enough of a (even if lapsed) musician, that I find the errors mostly offensive.  How about when the instruments aren’t in time with the voices?

  • Sometimes my brain gets really clever and plays two separate tunes at once.  That’s fun.  Actually no it’s not, it simply becomes noise.

I don’t know why my brain/ears are choosing to do this.  That’s slightly freaky especially as with time, it seems to be getting worse and louder.  I’ve had a medical opinion (as I mentioned in What’s Fair?) but I’m still waiting to see the specialist.

Musical hallucinations running about 95 per cent of every day are also affecting the rest of my life.  Again, let me explain:

  • As an introvert, I like my silence.  Oh, how I miss it.  The only thing that successfully drowns the sound is the television (as long as I totally focus on it and don’t just have it as background noise).  But then that’s just more noise.

  • As someone who is hearing impaired and who has worn hearing aids for the past six years, I also find background noise stops me from hearing the things I need to hear.  Now days I don’t often listen to music for this very reason.  But now I am overloaded in background noise flowing from my left ear;

  • As someone who needs plenty of sleep, I need quiet.  I am trying to use a Sleep App and while that generally works for me when I am dealing with a loud case of tinnitus, with the hallucinations I just find the Sleep App creates more noise.  Oh, if I could temporarily amputate my head and leave it in another room!  Okay, I’m only half joking;

  • As a fibromyalgia sufferer, I need stress-free everything.  With an increase in stress, partly because of the noise and partly because I don’t have any definite knowledge of what is really going on in my head, that all adds to more stress in my life.  That is resulting in more pain, more fatigue and what seems like permanent brain fog.  None of that is good or welcome;

  • As a reader (yes, including your posts) I simply can’t concentrate to read when I have this noise going on.  I’m not sure if that is a by-product of past Electro Convulsive Treatments (ECT) or the brain fog related to fibro.  What I do know is that I am really struggling to read anything;

  • As a writer (and blogger), the same applies.  That’s part of the purpose of this post to explain to you why I haven’t been posting regularly.  I apologise, especially to the many who have recently followed me.  There’s nothing like following a blogger and never getting any new posts to read.  Today I am using my trusty Sleep App again as I write.  It’s not really working, so if this is the most poorly written of all my posts, you’ll hopefully understand why;

  • And finally as someone with a small pile of mental illnesses.  I started to realise last week that these hallucinations are affecting my mental health.  I’m fighting not to slide back into Depression.  Some of the worst of my Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) traits are rising to the service and I find myself constantly argumentative and irritable.  Trying to withstand idiots has been beyond my ability at times, and I want to change the world… NOW!  Oh and one more thing.  It doesn’t seem related but I have absolutely no interest in eating right now.  That’s not good for someone with a history of Anorexia but I’m watching that one. Right now all of these issues have me taking a break from Social Media (except for WordPress).  Hopefully that way I won’t offend anymore people.

That’s probably more than you wanted to know but as you can see, these hallucinations are affecting my whole life.  I have a list of other symptoms for the ENT specialist when I get there.  I really hope s/he can help me as there wouldn’t be much worse than being stuck with these hallucinations for life.  That scares me as much as anything.

Please don’t give me advice (unless you are a ENT specialist).  I didn’t post this to get advice, but more to explain just what is going on for me and why you haven’t seen much of me lately.

My quote to finish is one more problem I have right now.  And it is perhaps the scariest of all.  I really struggle with it at night when I think the noise I can hear is someone breaking in.

“I no longer knew what was real and what wasn’t.  The lines between reality and delusion had become so blurred.” 

― A.B. Shepherd, The Beacon

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17 thoughts on “Lucy In The Sound Dome With Diamonds

  1. Yikes. 😦 I had ringing in my ears for a few years. That was annoying enough. And tiring. (((Cate)))

    Your reply box says “I would love your feedback” which struck me as rather ironic since it seems to be exactly what you’re getting at the moment – feedback!

    Could it be electro-magnetic? Not advice, honest! Just that we live under a radio mast and it has weird effects, especially when there’s strong solar flares (which we’ve had some huge ones off the sun recent weeks) so it made me wonder.

    1. Actually I’ve heard bad things about those radio masts. Thankfully there are none close by to my house. It’s scary though to think just how many things in our environment can affect our health. Thanks Michelle.

  2. It’s always nice to hear from the bloggers I follow on here and I was hoping you were doing ok. I’ve often had a few weeks myself when posting anything has been the last thing on my mind so I don’t feel any of us (although I still sometimes do myself!) need to apologise for not posting for a time.
    Good luck with the ENT appointment and I really hope it works out for you 🙂

  3. So sorry this is happening to you. As someone who has had tinnitus for almost 30 years, and who also had fibro and hearing loss, I can totally relate.

    But! You know what really works???!!! … just kidding….

    Big [but gentle] HUGS. I’ll be crossing fingers and toes (and will have my cats crossing paws too) that the ENT* can do something for you.

    * Treebeard? You do – after all, live in Middle Earth 🙂

    1. Treebeard? You should know me well enough to know I have no idea what you’re talking about. Although I have heard of Middle Earth. 🙂 Actually there is a Silver Birch tree in my neighbour’s backyard that I’m looking at suspiciously. Apparently those cause all sorts of problems. Meanwhile thanks for the hugs and toes/paws crossed.

  4. I get it. In every sense, I get it. I have auditory hallucinations myself, as does my daughter. She hears people talking though; sometimes just one, but it’s not unusual for her to feel like she’s in a loud arena full of noisy people. I hear the electrical whine of radios; the blipping in and out of stations, and sometimes just weird music that makes no sense. I know it’s “music”, but I couldn’t tell you what kind.
    I truly understand your need for quiet. Never being able to shelter your mind or escape from the constant noise – I get it profoundly. Medication has been my only island of tranquility, but sometimes those meds can be horrible in and of themselves, especially when you already have other medical issues going on that they just seem to make worse.
    All I have to offer you is – You are not alone in this. I am so sorry you have it too. I really am. If nothing else you have my understanding and sympathy – not pity – sympathy. We’ll keep up the fight, one day at a time.

    1. Thank you so much for that. Just reading your comment has made my day, year… When no one gets it, it is so hard especially in the world of mental disorders where hallucinations are automatically linked to psychosis. I see the ENT specialist in two weeks time and you know what I am most scared of? Him telling me that there is nothing he can do. I can’t bear the thought of this being my reality for now. I guess time will tell. But thank you so, so much. Understanding means everything to me.

  5. Sorry you’ve had this terrible trouble, Cate. Oddly, it made me think of the E. A. Poe quote, “I became insane, with long intervals of horrible sanity.” I hope you’ve gotten some relief. No advice here, though. I was paying attention 8^). My Mom used to really like a picture of a gorilla with the caption, “If I want your advice, I’ll beat it out of you.” Love the daisies, btw.

    1. Yes, well I haven’t dared to judge my degree of sanity. I was afraid of getting inane advice on that score too. So thanks for not going there. Oh, and I love the sound of your mom’s picture. 🙂 Thanks for commenting.

  6. Pingback: Whatever Happened To Lucy? | Infinite Sadness... or hope?

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