My sense of smell is pretty amusing to my family. Countless times I’ve walked into a room, sniffed like a hound, and asked, “What IS that?” The only response I get is groans: “Mom, your NOSE. Jeez!” But most of the time, it’s a blessing to have the kind of senses that I have; I can smell a lilac bush a block away, the salty scent of ocean sends me into happy-spasms, and you can bet I catch the aroma of burgers on a grill long before anyone else does.
Of course, there is the dark side of premium odor-detecting. I am assaulted by smells that others don’t even notice. The whiff of dirty clothes in an upstairs bedroom overwhelms me when I walk in the front door. That same grill that held lovely-smelling burgers smells pretty rank the next day if not cleaned, even with the lid closed. And if you had onions with your lunch, I don’t care how much you brushed your teeth, I will still smell it while we are talking. The odors that offend everyone? Worse for me. I’m mouth-breathing while cleaning a litter box, and broccoli that has overstayed its welcome in the crisper is gag-inducing.
Still, I wouldn’t give up this bionic sniffer for anything. Yes, it’s problematic, like the way my eyes catch everything (see “Noticing Mind Goes For A Walk”). Yet – it’s just one more thing that helps me experience life more fully, able to take in ALL of it, the good and the bad. Love me, love my incessant sniffing and inhaling.