I lost my sense of smell a number of years ago, and didn’t realize it for the longest time.
My sense of taste still exists, so apparently those 2 senses aren’t connected even though I am often asked if I can taste foods.
I’m writing about this because I’m surprised I don’t miss smelling, or perhaps it has been so long gone that the joy of getting a whiff of something has been forgotten.
Now that I think about it, maybe my sense of smell is connected to my memory bank rather than my taste buds.
It is common to see a beautiful flower and immediately stick my nose into its center. We’ve been trained since childhood to sniff the fragrance of honeysuckle, or make a beeline to the kitchen when freshly baked homemade bread is being pulled from the oven.
Of course, there are some odors I don’t miss. I can walk by a garbage can and my nostrils are not overcome with putrid smells. And if someone’s bathroom is long overdue a good cleaning I won’t mention it because it will be out of my frame of smelling reference.
Periodically I ask a visitor if my dogs have been lounging in the house too long and the room needs a hearty airing out. I have to depend on the honesty of others to pick up the bottle of room spray and give it a long blast of sickening fragrance that doesn’t bother me, but may make them wish they hadn’t said anything about the offending canine scents.
Truth be told, and I am into truth these days, I don’t know how much I depended on my sense of smell before losing it. I don’t remember ever having a life changing event because of a smell.
Oh, except for ether! Now that horrible stench remains in my nostrils to this day. As a child I had two surgeries under the influence of that gas, gagging me and deciding never to go to a hospital again. To this day when the automatic doors open into a medical office, I cringe thinking I’ll again be brought to my knees by getting a hint of ether.
All in all, my life hasn’t been altered by not smelling, but once in a great while I would like to enjoy the smell of fresh cut grass on a hot summer afternoon.