I have synesthesia for days of the week. Each day is a specific color, many letters are specific colors, and that’s how it has been all my life. This is one of the many reasons I thoroughly enjoyed reading Daniel Tammet’s autobiography, Born on a Blue Day.
I recently asked my daughter if she perceives anything similar, and it turns out she perceives numbers, certain letter sound combinations, and shapes on maps in distinct colors. She has ease with numbers and geography, so this suggests to me synesthesia can function as a learning aid. She even told me she has a sense of irritation or mild frustration when viewing most color-coded maps, because the countries are not depicted in the same color as she perceives they should be.
This got me thinking about how often we assume people around us perceive things our way, when they actually might have an entirely different lens on the world in a very concrete basic way. These public color experiments prove even basic colors we take for granted are the same for everyone can be perceived differently for each individual.
Anyway, as part of my recent focus on striving toward unconditional love for myself I had the sudden recognition that nearly every Friday, which is YELLOW for me, a “happy” color, I experience emotions ranging from sadness to grief to despair, and I have no idea why. So if you are trying to unconditionally love yourself, you must embrace all and accept all emotions that arise. Thus this poem arrived.
Why do I crash
over and over
tired, sad, lost
wandering at the side
of the road
on the way to somewhere
Neither here nor there.
Every dime spent.
Every flaw the size of my heart.
Thinking I’d rather go to sleep
and wake up Sunday where
the air is fresh, the sounds silent,
and all the minutes laid out before me
like patient words on a page.