I have had my hearing aids for almost two months now. My goodness…
One day, my left hearing aid’s battery died so, I took it out to change the battery. I had no idea just how bad my hearing was until that moment. I could hear simultaneously what I used to hear daily and what I can hear now. I knew I was missing out on so much, but this was still shocking. I remember a time my dad was walking to my apartment door from the elevator and he could hear my son crying all the way down the hall. Days that I would come home to my son crying, I wouldn’t know he was crying until I opened the door. Recently, I was leaving my apartment to go to work and my son didn’t want me to go. I could now hear his cry from the door all the way towards the elevator which is about 200+ feet away. Unbelievable. Now, I’m just wondering just how much I have missed all these years.
All the times I had to ask a person to repeat themselves and still not hear what they said after the third time and gave up with a “yeah” or “oh, wow”, and a nod. Those were friendships that could never flourish, relationships that could never be had. As humans, we need to communicate, it is vital. What a barrier it is to not be able to hear clearly. What a nuisance it is to hear a continuous ringing in your ear almost like its humming a loud tune in my ears. All those times people would be calling me and I couldn’t hear them until they were in my face and I made eye contact with them. The embarrassment I felt as my cheeks started to get hot, my throat swelling up with dry gulps.
I hear now. It’s not perfect though. Hearing aids are basically little speakers sitting looped around my ears receiving sounds. It’s perfect when I can focus on a few sounds. It gets more frustrating when environmental sounds like cars, phones ringing, groups of people talking down the hall, someone coming in and out of the bathroom in the hallway. Talking on a landline phone is still hard. I really hate talking on the phone because it’s still a portal for misinterpretation since my aids aren’t compatible use with this type of phone. I dread speaking on the phone. I want to be confident and sure of myself, but this is still a battle I’m having with my insecurities and confidence.
I am so happy with my hearing aids, despite the troubles I’ve still been facing. I’m able to hold full conversations now. I’m not missing out on things at my office, at home or with my family. I have been making the necessary adjustments to the volume when I need to so that I can be more comfortable and less overwhelmed with sounds. I’m able to hear 85% more than before. I’m grateful.
Now, with all that is going on in the political world, I’m afraid this is just my free trial for hearing aids. If this healthcare bill goes through, what will happen to my coverage for my hearing aids? It is a necessity that I have access to new hearing aids so that I can function in the world. I’m nervous.