Of excessive decibel levels and nuns

It’s Sunday afternoon and it’s getting dark. It’s been a beautiful day, sunny but not hot and how did we spend it? Indoors, of course. Maia and I did go to choir this morning (a lot of wide-eyed welcomes there…they hadn’t seen my bump in a few weeks) but the rest of the day we spent at my parents, where we are still temporarily residing. Maia’s persistent cough/congestion was diagnosed as ‘allergies’, a term which seems to encapsulate all common ailments these days. She is having two different inhalers for a few weeks and they seem to be working but running in the cold is still not a good idea.

Tomorrow we should be going back home, at last. The husband returns from the UK in the evening, so the rest of the family will finally give me some space and I’ll be able to start taking care of myself again without the help of overzealous relatives. The week started on a great note, with his return from Sicily (bearing a rose and a tray of Sicilian croissants) and an overnight stay at a local hotel. We spent Valentine’s Day (the first we got to celebrate) watching films in bed and overdosing on jelly beans. Yes, that’s celebrating for us! The following day he was off to the UK and Maia and I started our week-long sojourn at my parents’. The first two days were great…no laundry to worry about, no housework to take care of, no cooking to do, you get the idea. Then boredom started setting in. Then came frustration. Then I got so bloated and felt so huge and ugly that I cried myself to sleep. By this morning, I was itching to go back home. It’s sad that I don’t feel like this is my home any longer. I grew up here and spent Maia’s first four years living here but now my home is where my husband is. I miss our bed (and so does my neck), I miss the view from our living room and I miss having my things around me.

This afternoon was the cherry on the cake. Traditionally, two of my siblings and their families, plus me and my own (that’s a total of 13 persons, which can go up to 20) meet at my parents’ every Sunday afternoon. I love the fact that I get to meet almost all of my family so often. My husband isn’t close to his family and I never quite understood how that sort of family functions. They are fine with it but to me it feels alien. Having said that, the weekly get-togethers in this house can be quite unbearable for someone like me. Over the years, I’ve become increasingly sensitive to noise. It stresses me out and I get headaches (probably because I tense up so much). Now, imagine 13 loud relatives, half of them chasing each other around the house, screaming their heads off (that’s the children, not the adults) and the other half contradicting each other, with one particular member of the family coming up with the most absurd theories and believing s/he’s worthy of a Nobel prize. The decibel levels are insane.

Now that they’re all gone and I can hear myself breathe again, I realise how much I love my siblings and their kids but an hour ago I felt like running out of the house and becoming a cloistered nun. I’m not sure they’d have accepted a married, pregnant woman but I was ready to give it a shot.

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7 Comments

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  1. Heh poor you! I have been having similar nightmares lately as well. My mother finally got the hand of skype. Another aunt, whom I love dearly but is just loud, now is skype-friendly as well, as are two other aunts who live abroad. Every evening I receive invitations to join their conference call. When I did, it was so noise with everyone trying to talk over the other one and A looking at me and asking WTF?!? His conversations with his mother are held much more quietly. He has a field day at laughing at me when I hang up :S

  2. I have no idea really. With just two of use here, we’ve gotten used to the silence!

  3. Your family sounds so much like my family, except mine are slightly crazy + highly opinionated!

  4. Wow! Sounds fun but I would definitely need to hide away in a cave for a bit after that. The older I get, the more sensitive to noise I get. My husband’s voice is pretty loud. Sometimes when he’s telling me something I joke with him and say “Why are you yelling at me?” My mother is hard of hearing and has gotten pretty loud as well. She comes over every Saturday and between her and my husband it sounds like there are 13 people over! Abby is really sensitive to noise too. Sometimes we just leave the room together until they simmer down. 🙂 Glad you get to go home!

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