Thursday, September 18, 2008

Dropping a Line

Just wanted to quick drop a line (or two or three...)....





All Hubby had to do was walk in the house and startle me. I'd jump, I'd scream, I'd gasp and clutch my chest like I wanted to make sure I could catch my heart if it popped out, or all of the above. He would look at me and say that he doesn't mean to sneak up on me. He didn't have to try.

I could be anywhere in the house and I'd hear him. Squeak, creak. (Did I say our house is over a hundred years old? I guess I would squeak and creak, too, if I were a hundred years old.) I'd say, "I hear you." Sometimes I turn to look at him. He'd grin and shake his head and say,"I never meant to scare you before, you know." After a few more times of my turning to look at the source of the creaks, he'd continue to grin at me and say,"Now I will HAVE to sneak up on you!!" Aww, poor baby. I bet he enjoyed his ability to "not" sneak up on me and scare me at will. Now he just has to work at it. (Yeah, that means I hear the kids more, too. I am more aware of when they are coming or going, too. The "mom antenna" is more "tuned up" now....a HA!!)

I was sitting by the open window, reading (usually that will make me so engrossed in the book that I am totally unaware of what's going on around me unless I felt something vibrate, like someone "breaking some wind" on the couch. (Hubby says I wouldn't have to wait till I "felt" it; I would just have to look at the source of the sound and say, "Okay, who farted?" LOL.) I heard some kind of crunching sound outside. I look out the window and see Hubby riding Flare's bike, testing it. Her front tire was flat. She must have ran over some glass or something. The thought crossed her mind that maybe it was sabotaged, but Hubby got a new inner tire for it and said that it didn't look like it was cut or stabbed, so it must have been something she ran over. He also fixed her brakes a bit, too. Flare and I thank him for that. The brakes on her back tire will need to be replaced. Her bike is about four years old and it has had a lot of use over the last two years riding to it to school. (She carried her very heavy bike about five blocks and went to see if a friend could take her home. That was nice. Thanks again, to the friend who put her bike in the trunk and gave her a ride home.) Flare's arm is still sore from her bike-lifiting. The wheels wouldn't, well, wheel, very well being so flat.) She called home and this is what I heard:

Me: Hello?

Flare: Mom? It's Flare.

Me: Flare? Are you still at school? (I looked at my watch. It's about 4:30.)

Flare (what I could hear): ...bike...broke

Me: Your bike broke?

Flare (again, what I could hear): ...D, your interpreter...

Me, confused: Oh, it's D. I thought you were Flare.

Flare: Mom!! It's me, Flare.

Me, really confused: Flare? I thought you said you were D.

Flare: No, I'm at D's house....bike....

Me, the puzzle pieces falling into place: Oh, your bike is broke and you are at D's house. So she's going to give you a ride home?

Flare: Yes.

Me: Okay.

(Whew. Can you see how easily I can be easily confused when I was sure I was talking to one person and then I hear another name and it'd just throw me off? LOL)

I try to turn off my hearing aid at times and just see what I can hear with the CI. Voices are still very nasal-sounding, robotic. It isn't so high-pitched anymore, but it's not clear either. My hearing aid ear takes over for the phone use and speech recognition, though my audiogram says that my hearing aid ear had 32% speech recognition. But I can tell you that, at times, when the HA is blending with the CI, it "overpowers" the hearing aid ear. It picks up voices robotically and other sounds I wouldn't have picked up with the hearing aid alone. I was sitting on the loveseat in the living room and Flare was on the computer, singing. SINGING!! Did she do that all the time? Yes, she did. Whoa. I must have looked like a very calm, tuned-out Mom. LOL.

Onyx is a very noisy walker, too. I never paid attention to how much she drags her feet. I didn't even realize dogs could drag their feet. I can hear her lap up her water.

For the most part, the environmental sounds that I first heard are fading into the background (clock ticking, my breathing, even the "buzziness"). When I was outside, I thought I heard a mosquito buzz. Do they buzz? (I still don't get enough of a warning before getting bit, though. Sigh.

Since Angel's new school is on the outskirts of town now, during recess the kids come across garden snakes (garter snakes), toads, and caterpillars. Angel needed wanted a container to hold a caterpillar so she could keep one. She brought home a fuzzy brown and black caterpillar and named it "Tickles" because it tickles her as it walks across her hand with multiple sticky feet. The school yard is a nature wonderland. I hope there aren't anything dangerous lurking out there.

My next mapping is next Tuesday. Maybe this time I'll get some BEAM and/or autosensitivity programs mixed into the CI settings? These are different settings for the CI. So far all I have had to work with was ADRO with increased volume in each program. Baby steps....


A brief explanation of what these options are:

1. ADRO-for dynamic, changing environments

2. Whisper-soft and distant sounds

3. BEAM-focused listening in crowds

4. Autosensitivity-comfort in noise

Source: http://www.cochlearamericas.com/Products/22.asp

HUGS

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7 Comments:

At Thu Sep 18, 11:41:00 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Shari, It is exciting to hear the sounds from the house, family and even the dog drinking . Voices will improve.
Ohhhh I wish I could stop by and visit with you!!!!! You are doing great!!!!
HUGS Molly CC

 
At Fri Sep 19, 08:29:00 AM , OpenID suddensilence said...

You heard a mosquito buzzing!! How cool is that?! I do think they buzz, although I've never heard it. LOL

It must be really cool to be able to compare the way things sound with a CI and then with a hearing aid. :)

I was LOL when you mentioned Flare singing while she was on the computer, but you never realized that before. As you know, my daughter is her age and now I can hear her music when I go to knock on her bedroom door. I never even realized she was playing music before! Teenagers are noisy, aren't they?!

Hugs,

Wendi

 
At Fri Sep 19, 09:20:00 AM , Blogger Becky said...

That's sooo exciting to be able to hear all those sounds! I'm so glad you're blogging about it, too, because one day you'll need to remember all these details for your book. ;) (that one you should write, lol).

 
At Fri Sep 19, 10:54:00 PM , Blogger Amrita said...

Your new suystem is very sensitive and very techie.

Mine is an old behind the ear hearing aid, many times it doesn 't work too good.

 
At Sat Sep 20, 03:23:00 PM , Anonymous Kila said...

How fun for you to hear all those sounds.

And how fun for the kids to find critters in the schoolyard!

 
At Tue Sep 23, 07:18:00 PM , Blogger Shari/"Whiger" said...

Hi Molly,

Yes. The environmental sounds are clearer than the voices, but I'm continuously surprised by how much I'm hearing. :)

Wendi, I didn't know that mosquitos buzz. They never say Busy mosquitos like they do busy bees. LOL. It was not the same as bees, but it flew by my implanted ear as I was hanging laundry on the line. Ugh.

I think we were noisier teens than they are because I certainly could turn up the volume. Winks.

Becky, thanks. Many uses for the blog-it is a journal about my life's struggles and family stuff. Yes, I may put some of my personal experiences in a book. :)

Amrita-I hope you can get your hearing aid working better for you or better yet, a newer one. Is there an agency that can pay for your hearing aid (like a vocational rehabilitaion agency?) I don't know how things work in India.

Kila-Fun, fun, fun!! :) She's got another caterpillar now. She named it Speedy. She's waiting for it to spin a cocoon. :)

 
At Wed Sep 24, 03:02:00 AM , Blogger hillgrandmom said...

It must be lovely to hear all those 'homely' sounds now. Yes mosquitoes do buzz.
Btw, some of these fuzzy caterpillars can make you itch.

 

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