Thursday, November 13, 2008

Second in Command and Miscellany

I am surprised at myself. Off and on, I may only wear the CI (cochlear implant) and not wear the HA (hearing aid) for various reasons. I still have the high-pitched edge to the voices when I wear the CI alone. It never ceases to amaze me how both the CI and the HA compliment the other and make things sound “natural.”

Sometimes the phone rings when I am fresh out of the shower. (Yeah, it rings a LOT. Mostly junk (telemarketers) that wasn't worth the effort to answer.

Wet hair...

I would grab my HA (I am not comfortable using the phone with the CI ear yet) to answer it. (In any case, it’s not recommended to get the HA or the CI wet.) Usually I may wear the HA by itself until my hair is dry enough to put the CI on. During those times, I find that my better ear, the HA ear, is no longer my “better” ear. It’s demoted. Second-in-command.

My oldest daughter can see a remarkable difference when I am only wearing the HA. I am deaf. I get sounds. I get speech. I just don’t hear as well as I do with both the CI and the HA. (How did I manage the last 10-15 years?) I guess I just didn't realize how much effort it was until the last two years or so. You just do with what you got.

I love how well-rounded my hearing is with both the CI and the HA. Amazing.

Recent CI moment:

I was sitting at the kitchen table, back to the bright window, when I heard a “pinging” sound. It was repetitive. I look at the dog, but she is curled up into a croissant-shaped puffball. It couldn’t be the clock. It’s not the same sound. What is it? I am alone in the house. No one else could be making that sound. It took me about two minutes of focused, where-is-the-sound-coming-from concentration to realize what it was. I stared at the vent that leads to the basement. Bingo.

The dryer!!

Maybe a button from one of the jeans was knocking around in the dryer as it rotated. Ping. Ping. Ping.

I would have had to be within a few feet from the dryer to hear that. Now I was hearing it through the vent in the dining room. Not on the same floor. How cool is that?

(BTW, I found out that the HLAA (Hearing Loss Assoc. of America) convention of 2010 will be in Milwaukee!! How cool is that?) :)

On the home front:

We have one less dog in the house. :(

Topaz is at “training camp” for hunting. It’s a bit quieter around here. He’s the “barker” of the two. Onyx doesn’t really bark much at all, only when she really, really had to go outside or when she had enough of being outside. And when she wanted water/food. I've noticed that she seems to bark more now, though. A "Topaz" influence? Maybe.

Hubby took him in on Monday. Today he went out to visit him to see how the training was going. Topaz is learning commands. He's learning the "pointing" position really well. He says that he's just another person to him right now because Topaz has to been listening to two trainers. (Topaz, we hope you don't forget us.)

Onyx has an open sore on one of her back paws. She's been licking that wound a lot, and now it's swollen. Hubby will take her to the vet to get that looked at. Whew. Hope the owie isn't too badly infected.

It just seems like the year is passing so fast. Soon Thanksgiving and Christmas will be here. Angel is already practicing for the Christmas service in school.

It doesn’t feel like 2008 has been around here that long. I guess that’s a sure sign of getting old. I hear that all the time. LOL.

Flare is still doing great and has settled in high school life. She still bikes/walks to school. Occasionally, she’ll get a ride from Hubby if it’s raining or from the neighbor. She is so looking forward to watching the Twilight movie when it’s ready to hit the theaters.

I have been in a funk lately. I love to read. I used to read a 300 page novel within three hours, give or take a few minutes. My eyes get tired of reading within two hours and I don’t read half as fast anymore, it seems. Sometimes I’m rereading a paragraph because after I read it, I realized I lost track of who was talking or I am re-reading the same line. I have to keep my finger at the beginning of each line so I don’t do that. Note: I don’t always have to do that, though, but it helps if I want to keep track of where I am.

Right now I am reading “The Host” by Stephanie Meyer. I have about a hundred more pages left to read. I like the author’s writing style. She's not afraid to write fragmented sentences and has fresh similes.

The girl really knows how to write. I wish I could write like that. I just don’t have the imagination. It’s well thought out, too. There must be an outline of a sort to go by.

Not much has been happening that's exciting or news-worthy.



At Thu Nov 13, 07:38:00 PM , Blogger Becky said...

That is so great that you were able to hear something so far away!

I am in awe of the technology in those devices. Amazing.

So the doggie is going to learn to be a hunting dog, eh?

We just got a new puppy that is part Lab, part German Shorthaired's so cute how it 'points' at things instinctively. I'm told we could train it, but we don't go hunting since we moved from the midwest. I don't know if there IS hunting in our desert, lol.

Anyway, he's a cutie. I'm gonna have to post pics soon.

At Fri Nov 14, 01:03:00 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ohhh I love your "C I Moments." It is amazing to hear sounds from another room and even from another level/floor. Trust me when you hear it again; you will smile and say Happy Happy Sounds!!!!!!!!!!
I am thrilled for you!!!!HUGS, Molly CC

At Fri Nov 14, 08:20:00 AM , Blogger tammy said...

I just came across your blog from Deaf Village. I love your story about hearing the dryer from upstairs! The CI is an amazing device! Our son was set to get bilaterals, but his audiograms just keep getting better. We're now borderline of him being a CI candidate, so the big question is one CI with a HA or two CIs. It's nice to read an adult's perspective on how you hear with one of each. I look forward to more stories!

At Fri Nov 14, 09:36:00 AM , Anonymous Kila said...

Good Morning! Isn't it nice to see some sunshine?

I'm thrilled about you being able to hear something like dryer! What an improvement :)

Good luck to Topaz! (Our dog has always been a barker. At age 13, he still is!)

At Fri Nov 14, 09:42:00 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now THAT is an amazing CI moment!! What amazing progress you're making, Shari.

I know what you mean about wondering how you did it before. It's like getting glasses for the first time, and realizing all the stuff you were missing. But we don't realize (at the time) how much easier it all could be...we just go on as best we can.



At Fri Nov 14, 07:26:00 PM , Blogger Shari said...

Topaz was already doing that "pointing" stance a few times. I guess it's instinctive.

It's odd that you guys have half of both breeds of what we have. I'll definitely want to see your pet pics.:) Hope Judah doesn't decide to put make-up on the puppy or something...;)

Molly-Once in a while, I'll have to stop and think about what I'm hearing. That vent picks up a lot of sounds from the basement. We have ring-neck doves in the basement and sometimes I could hear them cooing away.

Tammy-Hi, thanks for stopping by. Yes. I am trilled with the CI. My pre-implanted ear was not getting any speech from the HA. I'm glad my perspecitve is informative, but keep in mind that everyone's experience is different. :) I think it's the hardest decidson for a parent. I wish you the best in what you decide.

Kila-Lately Onyx's been barking more, but mostly at me. Not the others. It's like she thinks that's the best way to get my attention. LOL

Wendi-Yeah, it's like we made do with what we have and when it gets better, we don't realize how bad things were or how hard we were working to get through life. Yeah to technology. Now I need bionic

At Fri Nov 14, 08:41:00 PM , Blogger Sue Flaska said...

It is so exciting to read stories about how you're doing with your CI! I am so happy for you that you made the choice to have the surgery. I can't even imagine.....

At Fri Nov 14, 10:24:00 PM , Blogger Amrita said...

Good to hear how the CI has made life easier for you.
My HA doesn 't work at times and I have to fill in the gaps. But I am grateful for that.

At Sat Nov 15, 04:54:00 AM , Blogger Laurie said...

Aren't CI Moments great?!!! :)

I will be in Milwaukee in 2010! Will have to spend a few extra days and go up to Two Rivers/Manitowoc where we used to live and to Door County.

Wisconsin has the best cheese! I plan to leave extra room in my suitcase to bring some back!

Hugs, Laurie

At Wed Nov 19, 09:10:00 PM , Blogger Karma said...

Congrats on being able to hear all of these random sounds of life!

At Sat Nov 29, 02:03:00 AM , Blogger Amrita said...

Thinking about you at thanksgiving

At Mon Dec 01, 06:48:00 PM , Blogger Shari said...

Sue-I truly had no idea how I was going to do. Just reading about others' experiences helped me keep my perspective and positivity high, but expectations low. Just think, 20-30 years ago, people didn't blog about their experiences like this and people had to do research in other ways and go by what their ENT and audis say.

Amrita-I'm sorry your HA doesn't work all the time. Nothing is really 100%. Even hearing people hear things wrong.

Laurie-2010 will be here before we know it. Eighteen months isn't that far away. It seems the older I get, the faster time flies. :)

I hear California is competing with WI for the best cheese. Let's hope WI stays No. 1!! :)

Karma-Thank you. :) Every day it gets better, but I don't think I'll really be "perfect". CIs won't make me a hearing person, but just the next best thing. :)

Amrita-Thank you. Thanksgiving was great-great food, too. :)


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