The Soundtrack of Our Lives

I never paid much attention to the soundtrack of my life until a few months after my life mate’s death when I realized all the things I wasn’t hearing. Every morning for decades, I woke to the motorized whine of his blender as he made a protein drink, the shushing of running water as he filtered the drinking water for the day, the clink of weights as he did his exercises. We were quiet people, but during the day, I’d occasionally I’d hear the soft hum of his music or tinny voices from the television in the other room. In the summer I could hear the rustle of the hose in the weeds as he watered the bushes and trees outside my window, and in the winter I could hear the stamp of his boots when he came in from clearing off snow. And always when we were together, there was the lovely sound of his voice as we talked and talked and talked — we talked of anything and everything until he got so sick he couldn’t carry the thread of a conversation any more. At the end, there were the scary night sounds of his falling when he tried to get out of bed, and the even scarier sounds of his yelps when he woke and couldn’t remember who he was or where he was.

Just from those sounds, you get an idea of our life together and how it ended. What is the soundtrack of your life? How has it changed over the years?

If you are a writer, what are the soundtracks of your characters’ lives? What do those sounds mean to your characters, and how does the soundtrack change during the course of the book to reflect the changes in their circumstances. How much can your readers tell about your characters from the sounds they hear?