I was born, unfortunately, with the parts of my middle ear reversed—the malleus, incus, stapes, and eardrum all backward—giving me what doctors call “inverse aural sensitivity.” As a result, loud sounds are like a gentle spring rain to me; soft sounds like thunder. Each day, ants scrabbling over one another resembles being in the middle of a stampede. Atoms colliding or separating feels like being in a theater filled with screams. A high-up eagle’s adjustments on subtle currents of warmth and cool howl like gale-force winds in my ears. A whisper of "I like you" detonates like an atom bomb.