I’m used to a certain amount of background noise in my life.
I’m the second oldest of seven children. Growing up there was really, no such thing as “quiet time” much as my parents may have liked. It *may* be part of the reason I used to sit up and read so late in the night. No one else was awake. Of course, I had one sister that talked in her sleep and another who occasionally walked in her sleep and a mother who was also a night owl so even then, there were sounds. Our house was a century house. It made all kinds of noises, most of which you could only hear at night. As if even the house was uncomfortable when there weren’t the shouts and foot-falls of children, it too would stretch and moan and groan at night.
I married and moved out before twenty and had five children in eight years. So, my own house was never quiet either. Babies crying, or laughing, children shrieking in either mirth or frustration, a television on here, a radio blaring there. An endless circus of neighbors and friends and classmates and pets swung through our doors. We lived in a busy neighborhood, and the cars rolled by all the time. People shouted outside our windows and on hot summer nights, the sounds of our community often buzzed well into the wee hours of the morning.
The kids grew older and we moved to a smaller town. However, older kids have computer games and video games and hand held electronics and cell phones, all of which beep and whistle and click and bee-boop all day and night long. We joined a theatre and although it was MASSIVE fun, it only made us all louder and more boisterous, if you can imagine.
We now live out east where life in general, is quieter. The province in general doesn’t have the same sense of mad-dash to it. People are quieter (unless they’re laughing) and things just don’t seem as…frantic.
My kids are older, which means, even though they are still at times, the loudest creatures that ever were blessed with lung capacities, they also appreciate silence now and then. Which means, there are moments, few and far between, sure, but bona fide moments in my life that are quiet.
I don’t know what I’m going to do when the dogs have lived out their time and all the kids have moved out and moved on. But I do know this. I will enjoy it when the noise in the house is the noise I create, and I can decide on where and when it happens.
Even so, a part of me knows I’m really going to miss it.