“I don’t sing because I’m happy. I’m happy because I sing.” ~ William james
People with sensory processing disorder, like many on the spectrum, develop methods and mechanisms for dealing with stimulation. While some people can work in complete silence, I cannot. Specifically, I need the rhythm of music to help me focus. Not background conversation – I’ll focus on what’s being said. If there’s no muted music playing, I’ll hum or whistle usually unaware that I’m doing so until someone says something.
The downside of this is that all it takes is a word or a phrase in a conversation to get a song into my head. Sometimes for days. So just this week, this is what I’ve heard so far:
- I had a patient complain that when she closed her eyes she felt like was falling (she had vertigo) — “Catch Me I’m Falling” by Pretty Poison
- I dreamed that I was in a spooky hospital with two of my friends and a light at the end of the hallway. When I was telling them about it – “The Addams Family” theme song
- I was semi-dozing on a flight and overheard two people talking about “doing the right thing” – “Do the Next Right Thing” from Frozen 2
- A co-worker said the word “great” in a teleconference call – “Great is Thy Faithfulness” by Cece Winans
- I had a former co-worker that used to sing the Love Boat Theme Song purposely, just to get it stuck in my head
There is no rhyme or reason to the words that can set off a song in my head. The conversation may not even be about music (it usually isn’t). If I had more time, I’d probably read up on SPD and music and movement. Both are used in therapies with autistic peoples.
So there you go, I wee bit of insight into how my brain works.