Friday, March 4, 2011

I hear you and I hear what you're saying

Do you ever not feel heard?

In Spiritual Psychology, we have a counseling skill called Heart-Centered Listening. This is an extremely important skill since listening well is one of the most important skills in being a good counselor. One of the phrases we use often to indicate that we hear you and we hear what you're saying is:

I hear you and I hear what you're saying.


It's pretty obvious, but when someone is going around and around trying to explain how they are feeling to you in a million different ways, when you say, "I hear you and I hear what you're saying," they sit back, take a breath, feel heard and move on.

It's a fantastic skill. Use it at will. You're welcome.

For the past week, I have not been able to hear anybody or hear what they are saying because I temporarily lost most of my hearing. It was a combo of a dip in a swimming pool, followed by water in my ears that wasn't draining, followed by manic Q-tip usage, followed by jamming the wax and whatever else too far down my canal to grab with the torque of a Q-tip.

(When I was a kid, my doctor told me that I wasn't allowed to put anything in my ear except my elbow. Clearly, I'm not always a good listener.)

My sister said it was time to take a good hard look at what was going on.

I assumed this meant I needed to process what was going on. Do some self-therapy. Give my ear a voice. Let it be heard. Contemplate what Louise L. Hay would say about not being able to hear. What am I not able to hear? Yadda yadda yadda.

What my sister meant was that it was time to take an actual look inside the ear.

Or that.

She donned a headlamp and had a looksy in my ear canal. She diagnosed that my ear was in fact "clogged with gunk."

We zipped off to the local apothecary. Seriously. Her small town in Southern Ontario, Canada, has a local apothecary. He's great. People swear by him. People go to him before they go to the doctor. He's that good.
He also diagnosed that my ear was in fact "clogged with gunk."

Cut to an hour later. I'm laying sideways on the couch. I've got hydrogen peroxide poured down my ear canal as instructed by the apothecary. It's bubbling away and pulling the gunk out of my ear. My sister, headlamp on, is hovering above and catching the bits of wax and dead skin with a bulb baby syringe, traditionally used to pull boogers out of babies' nostrils. My five-year-old niece is also hovering above me. She's holding her rhinoceros flashlight over my head. It roars like a rhino whenever it's on.

This is family life. You just can't make this stuff up.

At one point, the giant gob of gunk dislodged and I was once again free to "hear you and hear what you're saying."

Hydrogen peroxide. Who knew?


  1. Jeff, I too saw Manic Q-tip Usage in concert at the Bowl in '78.

  2. Jule, I KNEW that was you behind me.

  3. You need an ear candle.
    Yes, really.

  4. I've had gunk in my ear since Alex was born. I'm gonna try this! Also, please keep writing. I so enjoy it!

  5. Um... Buffalo Rachel... did you READ that site on ear candling? Yikes.

  6. Laughing out loud at the visual description of the "ear de-gunking". Glad you are better.

  7. Nothing like family in your hour of need.


  8. I was going to ask you if you'd looked into ear candling. Seems like a recipe for hair on fire.

    My mom used to put rubbing alcohol in our ears when we got water in them at the lake. I guess peroxide would've been a better bet.

  9. Wendy Bloemink DobrijevicMarch 16, 2011

    you are in the land of olive oil now use it on your baguette and your ears...


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