According to the Oxford dictionary, the definition of the word Synesthesia is:

The production of a sense impression relating to one sense or part of the body by stimulation of another sense or part of the body.

People experience synesthesia this in many different ways and it is very much a personal matter because of how it is connected to the thought process. For me it has always been in the attachment of feelings and sounds to colours. With a very musical upbringing, and training to be a classical vocalist for most of my life, many of my first impressions of music have been in direct correlation with how I have both heard (and as a result seen) pieces for the first time. For example, whilst I can hear keys in particular colours regularly, the characters of pieces also have their own shades. Shostakovich 5 will always be a very vibrant red whereas Elgar’s cello concerto is a muted lilac, like something before a storm starts.

Recently life has been a mix of things which is doubly hard when my brain paints things the shade I’m feeling. Whenever I am down, things seem a little greyer than they perhaps need to be and this can make it feel like the weight of the world is dwelling on either shoulder. But this is also true of the good times. Whenever I remember my childhood or visit places where I have positive memories, the whole space replays those times before me and as a result they present themselves in a whirl of the most beautiful hues. Pinks, silver, gold, yellow – I see how wonderful these times were and they make me strive towards creating projects which will make me feel like that again. Christmas time is always such a wonderful time because it feels like living in star light. Seeing people so at ease and excited for those few days at the very heart of winter melts everything away. Is it odd if I say that red post boxes in the snow and soggy scarves have always seemed so warm to me?

More than anything, right now I am aspiring for the colour orange. It’s within my reach and I can see it just around the corner… but I’m not there yet. It can be difficult to acknowledge that there are times when things will seem empty due to the lack of attainability when it comes to feeling exactly as I want to. But so long as I have the ability to love and to laugh, I know that my own sunshine is never far away. My eyes show it and I need no evidence, for the world seems to take on a Parisian air and every day becomes a golden one if I let myself accept that everyone feels this way and I don’t need to feel as alone as I sometimes do. Who needs a global golden age when you can make one? You don’t need synaesthesia to feel orange – you just need to open up to the warm and free and all of those things that seem to come when the sun is on the nape of your neck: You just need to know that home is never far away and tomorrow is a brand new chance to feel something worthwhile. The moment you open up your mind to the possibility that grey is just orange in disguise is the moment when you allow yourself to stand back up and listen to what really matters, and in those moments when you can take on the world you know that no matter what, you will do this. Because where there is orange, apricot, sunset, tea rose – there is hope.