Saturday, 1 August 2015

I Feel your Pain... my feet.

I was probably six or seven years old before I learned that not everyone sees names in colour.   I don't mean that I associate a name with a colour, rather that for me, names are a particular colour.   Strangely enough, I don't seem to have that response to individual letters, sounds, numbers or words.  No, I tell a lie, the number six is beige, but that is the only one I see in colour.

My parents thought it was probably an affectation and would sometimes try to test me to see whether the colours varied.   They didn't, because it was, and still is (although to a lesser extent) just something which happens, no thought required.  The colours are consistent.

For example: Pamela is green, Harry is green, Felicity is mid-brown, Max is a mellow yellow,  Susan is red, Davina a dark royal blue, James is a dark salmon pink while Roly is silver-grey, and Avril is cream.    Names come in all colours - although I can't think of a purple or violet one offhand.

I should also say that my like or dislike of a particular name does not come into it.   I took no notice of colours when naming my children, they may wish that I had!

I now know that it is called synesthesia - joined perception.   There are many different forms, the one I have being the most common.

Another of my oddities is that when I see someone in pain, bleeding, or otherwise injured, I get an intense throb of pain in the soles of my feet.  It soon passes, but it is painful.    "Mummy, my feet hurt" was the way I used to express it when I was younger.

No wonder my parents thought I was an odd child.

I have only recently found out that these two things are connected, forms of synesthesia, that joining of perception.  Apparently there is a genetic link - but none of my children has ever shown any sign of it - perhaps it will show up in my grandchildren.   These things make life interesting.

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