Monday, February 6, 2012

Final testing today......

A week ago today I had my cat scan done. The cat scan is done to check the anatomy of the bone structures in my inner ear. I remember feeling excited that morning on my drive to downtown Dayton. I felt like things were moving forward and that I was one step closer. I kept myself busy all week because the anticipation of the final day of testing was building. I woke up this morning feeling excited and nervous. I looked outside and it was a gorgeous and sunny morning. I took a shower and as I was getting ready I decided to pause for a moment and open my bathroom window. I propped my elbows on the windowstill and just stared outside. The sky was so blue. The sun was shining so bright on my face. The fresh air and slight breeze just felt so good. I was thinking this is the day the Lord hath made....I was grateful and glad for this glorious day. I was ready for today. I finished getting ready and anxiously awaited for my Mom to make her 2 hour drive to be with me. Before my appointment, we go to Applebee's for lunch. We have so many things to talk about.....we pore over the many ideas we have for our book. I am so excited to finally set things in motion for the book we are going to write together about our life experiences and challenges from the time I was born. I intently listen to some of her memories of when I was born.....some of which I had never heard before. I can't wait to hear more as we go along in the book. I am just in awe of what my parents went through for me......I am where I am today because of them. It is a powerful conviction of their love for me.
It was time for my final test. This was a hearing test with my hearing aids in to determine if I am a candidate for a cochlear implant. I sat in a soundproof booth in front of a speaker. My audiologist, Mary Beth, told me there would be a series of three tests. The first was with static sounds. I was to raise my hand each time I heard the noise. It was done with both hearing aids in at the same time then one at a time with each aid alone. The second test was with a man and woman's voice speaking sentences. I was to repeat any words I could hear WITHOUT lipreading. During this test, I was feeling very frustrated. All I could hear was a mumble of many words. I tried so hard to make out the words. The third test was with a male voice that said ready then one word. I was to repeat any words that I could make out. I still could not make out the words. I could hear the sounds but not make out the words. I became more frustrated and realized right there and then how much I really relied on lipreading to make out the sounds of words. I did the very best I could. The test lasted 45 minutes. Mary Beth opened the door of the soundproof booth and I looked at her and said, "That was so frustrating for me. " She told me, "Lisa, I know it's hard and I felt bad telling you to do this test without lipreading but remember, this is a test to see if you are a candidate. This is a test you do not want to do good on." I'm thinking to myself, she's right but in my mind I strive to be the best I can be everyday and I didn't like that feeling of not being able to make out the words. I didn't like that I failed.  But.....I only allowed myself to feel that very briefly. As I walk down the hall to her office, I see Todd in the waiting room. His face was so comforting to see and I was so glad he came. We walk into her office. I was anxious to know how I did. My audiologist tells me in order to qualify for the implant I have to get less than 65 percent of the words right. She tells me out of 100 words with both hearing aids on I only got three words right. With my left aid alone I got two words right. With my right aid alone I got one word right. For a very brief moment my heart sinks and I'm thinking to myself, geez, that's one percent or less. Then Mary Beth tells me, "Lisa, from the results of this test, you are a candidate for the cochlear implant. " My eyes get misty and I look over at my Mom and she has the biggest smile on her face. I see the excitement in her face. Even though I am told I am a candidate, I'm not allowing myself to get too excited because I want to hear the words from my doctor first at my appointment with him next week. Mary Beth proceeds to show me what the implant looks like and tells us everything we need to know about it. My Mom and I must have asked her a thousand questions but she answered all of them thoroughly. Todd was sitting there quietly and listened to all of us intently. Even though he looked serious, I knew from his expressions, he was excited for me. My final appointment is next Monday with my doctor to go over the results of the hearing test and my cat scan. He will tell me then if I am a definite candidate or not. I left the audiologist's office feeling pretty good. As I say goodbye to my Mom, I am feeling very grateful that she shared this day with me. My Dad wanted so badly to come to my appointment but got tied up with work in Columbus. I know he was feeling very anxious and he made the drive straight to my house from Columbus. It was 8:30pm when he arrived. I was so glad to see him. I share with him the news about my appointment. My Dad is truly excited for me. We talked for awhile. As we say goodbye, he walks out the door and looks back at me and says, "Love you". And of course, I tell him I love him too. I close the door and I think to myself, I have the best parents in the world......what a gift.
Until next Monday........

1 comment:

  1. Way to go!!!! I am so excited for you. I posted another comment, but am not sure it went through. Anyway, I know that this has been a long journey, but from the sounds of your bio, you certainly have succeeded. I would love to see you sometime. My sister lives in Dayton. I will be going there sometime around March 15 for 3 weeks. I would love to reconnect and hear about your book. Always, Dr. Ann