Last weekend I visited my parents which is always nice. The weekend contained nice talks, a walk in a botanic garden and much more. I have already discussed my thoughts about my hearing loss and Cochlear Implants (CI) with my parents. It is really nice to receive all the feedback and support from my family when I am having all these frustrations and consider the idea about getting CI.
I have considered my large hearing loss for quite som time and in the last couple of months I have considered if CI could be a solution for me. Both of these issues have occupied my mind a lot since the last camp for young people with hearing losses. It has been a hard process with ups and downs and at times it has been very hard to keep my energy up. I feel pretty much clarified about my hearing loss and the process about CI. I have read a lot about the facts but also watched and read many personal experiences on blogs and Youtube videos. It has without any doubt given me many things to consider and worry about. But as it is now I feel positive towards CI in the case that it turns out that I could benefit from getting it.
Something tells me that I am a good CI candidate. It is of course impossible for me to judge it without getting an expert oppinion. But I have noticed that some of the CI users that I know is able to hear in situations where I cannot. I have talked about my considerations with one of the CI users I know from the camp for young people with hearinglosses. She told me after reading my blog that she was not in doubt that I should have CI. It is a great feeling to discuss my considerations with someone that has actually received CI and which has been in the same situation as me.
But lets return to the story about my nice weekend with my parents. This was a weekend in which my ability to hear occupied my mind most of the time. I noticed different situations where it was difficult if not impossible for me to hear without asking people to repeat words or whole sentences multiple times. This was especially an issue during a cartrip towards a botanic garden. On the trip home I had to realize that I was tired of listening, and therefore I had to skip participating in the guessing games that my brother and sister was playing. I know a car trip is not the best example as many hearing aid users find it hard to communicate in a car without extra equipments like handheld microphones. But this situation reminded me of all the different situations where I find it hard to hear. I used a lot of the hometrip to think about how frustrating it is that I have to “disconnect” in these situations. But it also reminded me that if I decide to listen in these situations then it would require that people repeat what they say multiple times. It is frustrating for me, but it also frustrating for other people if they have to repeat something so many times. I know many people are willing to adjust a listening situation to my advantage – but there are limits as to how much these situations can be adapted without putting restraints on the conversation.
Despite of these frustrations I also got some funny views on my hearing loss. People with hearing losses frequently experience to hear something wrong or to miss parts of a sentence and therefore they have to guess what was said. This means that you might misunderstand or hear something completely wrong.
One evening in the weekend at my parents we were sitting in couch and having a nice chat. My mother eventually wrinkled her nose and said: “I think I can smell the breath of the dog”. I stopped up in my mind and rather sceptically replied o…kay… and then started to wonder about what I had heard. A little time went and then my mother said “I gotta go out and look at them”. At this moment I realized that I initially had heard very wrong, and I was paralyzed that it was possible to have heard so much wrong. What my mother had actually said was that she could smell the buns which were in the oven 🙂
Having a hearing loss is of course a frustration in many situations but I must admit that it can be very encouragin when you experience entertaining misunderstandings. I find it very relieving to tell people about it in the situation so everyone can have a laugh about it. By doing it also help other people in understanding how and what I hear.
This also reminds me about when I was writing a previous post on this blog. I wanted to write “lip reading” (in danish “mundaflæse”) but the vocabulary of my browser did not know that word. It suggested the word “mundblæse” which roughly translates to “mouth blow”. You can make very fun sentences if you write that in stead. I wrote about this with some friends on Facebook and here are some rough translations of the sentences that we made:
- “I cannot hear what you say, I need to mouth blow you”
- “You can mouth blow up til 75 % without hearing”
- “When you cannot mouth blow people you cannot participate”
- “Please don’t hide you mouth behind your hands, I cannot mouth blow you!”