My husband Ted sleeps with a c-pap machine. It keeps him from snoring, and it keeps his airway open so he doesn’t stop breathing at night. I guess that’s a good thing. (Of course, it’s a good thing!)
Except – when the darn mask slips and the air seal is broken and – he snores from under his mask. >sigh< The snoring wakes me up and I usually can give him a shove and as he moves around, post-shove, the mask slips back in to place and the snoring stops.
Except – when he has a bad cold.
Ted has a bad cold and with his airways swollen, he is snoring at night and no amount of shoving stops it. I couldn’t stand it last night. Two in the morning, I am wide awake listening to his snoring. But, because he has a bad cold and I was showing mercy, I didn’t want to give him the usual shove because I wanted the poor sick guy to sleep. In the past, I would end up on the couch. But this time I wanted my comfy bed!
Ah-ha! I remembered the earplugs I had in the bathroom closet. So, I pull down the covers (snore) sit up on the side of the bed (squeak of bedsprings followed by a snore) stand up next to the bed (snore) take a few steps (floor creaks beneath my footsteps) when suddenly Ted asks, “Where are you going? What’s wrong?”
Really? He can sleep through the whooshing sound of his own c-pap masked face overlayed with the sawing noise of his own loud snores, and when I try to sneak out of bed he can hear me??
So then this afternoon I was in the bedroom folding laundry while playing my rehearsal music cd for this Sunday’s service. Now our bedroom is situated at the back corner of the house. Outside that corner of the house we have a tree that the neighbor kids love to climb on. I had the music turned up and was loudly singing along to a new song I needed to learn. When there came the quiet pause between songs, I heard voices outside my window. I think I did. Oh I definitely did! I peeked between the curtains and saw kids in my tree. “Oh Lord,” I thought, “I hope they didn’t hear me!” A few minutes later I poked my head out the back door and yelled to the kids, “Hey I hope you weren’t listening to my singing!” “No,” they replied, “We were listening to the band playing.”
Huh, what? The band playing? Ohh … there was some high school band thing going on and, since we live so close to the high school, we could hear the lively marching band music coming from the stadium.
And then there was the time….
There was this girl who used to go to our church; I will call her Irene. Irene loved to talk. And talk. And talk. I remember so distinctly the time when, as I was ascending the steps from the church basement, Irene was descending. Our paths crossed in the middle of the steps. Irene started talking and said “Hi Laurel, how are you? Did you …. …. ….” and she continued to talk. And talk. And talk. I think I tried to speak a few times but as she continued her descent while talking to me, I could only continue my ascent and merely bob my head a few times in reply to her non-stop chatter. Irene disappeared around the corner and I stood there, absolutely flabbergasted that this person had just delivered a five-minute monologue and I hadn’t uttered a word. I was stunned. I’ve never forgotten that.
So what do you listen to?
I later asked Ted how and why he could wake up from the sneaking-out noises I was making and yet sleep through his c-pap whooshing and his rumbling snoring. He said it was due to the ‘mother’s ears’ I always told him I had when I would always hear and wake up when I heard our young children in the middle of the night. Usually, even now, I get up if I have heard Amanda up sick and he was alert to me leaving the bed in case he could help with Amanda. He was listening for me 🙂
And the kids outside my window? Oh I am sure they could hear me – they just weren’t listening for me because as they sat up in my tree, they were catching that cool breeze full of marching band music.
And my friend Irene? Well, she was just listening to herself!
Every day we are presented with a lot of noise, sounds, voices, whispers, music, laughter, and all kinds of racket. What do you tune out? What do you hear? Can you hear when your spouse needs help? Do you listen to what’s happening nearby, or let your ears catch the far-off sounds that filter your way?
Do you listen at all?
Proverbs 1:5a …let the wise listen and add to their learning…