Sunday, February 22, 2015

Beautiful sounds are everywhere!

I am loving my life with my cochlear implant. I can't believe it has been two years already. I never imagined I would be where I am now with the beautiful sounds I hear. It is miraculous! I was reading through my past blog entries and I am just amazed at how far I have come. The beginning was an emotional roller coaster as I struggled with adapting to my new world of sounds. My whole world changed the day my "ear" was turned on.  It was a very trying few months and I can remember there were days when I thought I would go into sensory overload. I was exhausted to no end as my brain soaked up all the energy I had trying to make thousands of neural connections. There were times I wanted to take it off and just retreat back into my quiet comfort zone.  But I never gave up. I remained steadfast in my walk with The Lord and He lifted me through my trying times. I am so grateful for that. Fast forward to two years later....I cannot imagine my life without my "ear".  I cannot stand it when my battery dies so I always keep my spare batteries recharged at all times. Without it, I realize how deaf I really am. I thought I had good hearing with my hearing aids before but having a cochlear implant really blew my aids out of the water! It is amazing when I think about how well I thought I could hear with my aids when now I hear SO MUCH MORE.  In adults, 0-25 DB hL is considered normal hearing. I am now in the normal hearing range with my cochlear! The world is full of beautiful sounds everywhere! Many new sounds I hear now that I didn't hear with my aids are: birds chirping (my favorite), the ocean waves, the crunching of leaves in the fall, my dog licking out of his water bowl, the sizzling sound of food cooking, my refrigerator kicking on, the oven timer from the next room (!), the microwave buzzer, crickets chirping, the crackling sound of the wood in the fireplace, the squeaking sound of wet shoes across the floor, tree frogs, annoying sounds of cicadas, understanding my pastor's sermon, the many instrumental sounds of music, my kids laughing or talking in the other room, the telephone ringing.....the list goes on! I've always been able to hear people's voices but what is most profound to me now is voices are now clear and crisp with speech sounds. I don't have to struggle as hard to understand. I still lipread because that is very natural to me but it is not such a struggle anymore. Two years later, I still continue to learn new
sounds. It is amazing. And now, I cannot imagine going the rest of my life without giving my other ear the same opportunity to hear! I've thought a great deal about this the last several months and I've prayed about it. I would love to be able to have surround sound hearing. Two weeks ago, I decided to consult with my ENT doctor who did my surgery. He said I was a candidate for the other ear and thought I would do well with bilateral hearing. I had a cat scan done this week to make sure my ear has no signs of infection. This week, I have an appointment to meet with my audiologist to go over everything and sign papers to get the process rolling for insurance approval. This is an exciting time as I start a new leg of my journey! Now, the waiting game begins.....but I am trusting in God's plan for me.

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