The other morning, I was lying in bed next to my wife. I’m half-asleep and I can hear a dog barking in the house next door or somewhere off in the distance, and I can feel myself growing irritated. It barks in three-second intervals. It goes on for a long time, until I begin paying closer attention.
I suddenly realize that the noise is in fact coming from my wife’s nostril. Her nose is blocked, making this very quiet expulsion of air. It is actually a tiny sound coming from my wife resting her head on my shoulder, and not a wild dog barking from somewhere off in the distance. My irritation evaporates instantly, and I am charmed, delighted.
Very simply, this is a transformation. The situation has not changed, not one bit, the noise continues, exactly the same, however my relationship to the noise has altered, and once again, my world is restored to order, and I am home.