I realize it meant I was a ‘new’ patient with a ‘nose’ issue, but God is known for restoration and if I’m going to have an ID that reads: NEW NOSE, I’m going to accept it.
I explained to Dr. T what my smell/taste world was like:
- Chocolate tastes like the evil twin of chocolate
- Perfumes smell like chemicals
- Coffee and urine are in the same scent genre
- Peanuts taste and smell like mold
- A refreshing rain smells like weird garbage
- Dijon mustard and bananas taste like fingernail polish
- Vegetables taste like the lettuce ‘soup’ that’s forgotten in the back of the fridge
- Diesel, gasoline and popcorn are in the same scent genre
- Can’t smell: bleach, alcohol, feces, chlorine, sewer gas, human gas, bacon, etc.
Dr. T was thorough, explanatory, kind, and impressed that I was doing my own scent therapy program. He let me know he’d be conferring with his mentor who is the top taste/smell specialist in the United States. Then, he ordered a baseline sniff test.
I’ve always enjoyed ‘scratch and sniff’ tests, but I had no idea what I was in for: 40 multiple choice scratch and sniff questions for each nostril. For the results to be valid, I HAD to mark an answer.
If I were able to actually identify some of the scents, the whole experience would have been a lot less frustrating. No matter how much I scratched the square or how many times I sniffed it–each time bringing it even closer to my nostril–I couldn’t really differentiate between: [lilac, chili, coconut, whiskey], [skunk, mint, fruit punch, cola], [gasoline, pizza, peanuts, lilac], or the hundreds of other options. I wondered if this was how my students with learning disabilities felt when I had them do baseline testing.