Wednesday, August 28, 2013

August 28, 2013

Cochlear Implant = Communication
Wednesday,  August 28, 2013

This morning at the office, my husband was working on a job for a customer when I arrived.  I had a question or two for him while he finished up his project.  Then he followed me to my office and sat in the desk across from mine and talked about a couple of things.  Then he went to wait on a customer and came back.  Another customer interrupted us and he returned.  Later I followed him to his office to continue a discussion.  What were we talking about?  I don't remember.  Was it important?  Not really anything earth-shattering.  Why am I telling you?  Because, we COULD have a conversation!  We are no longer limited to just the necessary exchange of information.  We can again just talk about each other's opinions on a subject and laugh about the silly things customers ask.  We can talk about our plans for the day or the evening.  We can talk about our kids and our grand kids.  Again, nothing special, but the things that you might spend an hour on the phone talking to your best friend about.  He is my best friend.  He knows me better than anyone else.  He cares about what matters to me. 

For the last several years we have talked less and less to each other.  He would say that if we talked very long, his throat would start hurting from him straining to talk loud enough for me to hear.  I would get tired of asking him over and over what he had said or would be embarrassed to ask for the third time.  We still have to sometimes have something repeated, but now I am repeating for him as often as he is repeating for me.  Since I can now hear myself speak (before I couldn't) I am not talking as loud and he realizes he has some hearing loss.

Now I remember what part of the discussion was about.  Last night his Kindle died!  If you know Ron at all, you know that he is an avid reader.  He fought for years against getting a Kindle since he always bought his books at Half Price Bookstores and figured there weren't bargains in the eBooks.  Now he knows there are.  He also says it is much easier to hold the Kindle than the thick books he normally reads.  Last night I told him he could borrow my Kindle since I am mostly using the Kindle Fire now, but just not to overload it with Sci-Fi books.  We have insurance on the Kindles so I knew he would get his fixed or replaced soon.  When I got to the office he told me he had contacted them and they said he would have a new one by Friday and he should then return his to them within 30 days.  In the past, he probably would have said, "I talked to Amazon and they are taking care of replacing the Kindle."  Instead, he told me all about the conversations with the various people and how helpful they were and the sympathy he got from the first service person he told about it.

That is what I have tried to share often on this blog.  A person who is hearing impaired is excluded from the everyday events in the lives of those around them.  Did it matter that I have all the details?  Not really, except that in our daily lives, that is the way we share with each other.  We tell them about what happened in our life that day.  We share the good and the bad, the funny and the frustrating, the silly and the sad.  Now, we can do that again.  Remember the first morning after they activated my Cochlear Implant, I mentioned we were almost late to our appointment to have further adjustments done on the sound processor.  Ron told the ladies at the Houston Ear Research Foundation that it was their fault that we were almost late since we were having a conversation in the car on the way and he missed his turn.  He has missed talking to me and listening to me as much as I have missed talking to and listening to him.

This afternoon I had an appointment in Harlingen (about 30 miles away) with the Urologist, Dr.  McCormick, I had seen in the spring for an ongoing problem.  When she came into the examining room, her first statement as she peeked around the door was, "Can you hear me now?"  I laughed and assured her that I could hear her.  (We didn't meet her until I had lost my hearing, so I had not ever really heard her.)  She grinned and wanted to know all about it.  Our assorted doctors and my dentist have been among the most interested in my progress.  They are delighted with the results.  My appointment was just a follow up and she went over a few things and then said she would see me in a year.  Yea!!!  Although we both really like her and would not mind chatting with her again, not seeing her in her office for a year would be very nice.  Ron does have an appointment with her soon, but I doubt I will go with him.

From there I went to the office of my thyroid doctor, Dr. Concha.  I see her once a year and when I looked at the appointment card recently I saw that although they had put the date for the next appointment on the card, the receptionist had failed to put the time on there.  The appointment isn't until December, but since her office is a block away from Dr. McCormick's, I decided to just stop in and get the time - also remember, I don't do much on the phone.  I got that taken care of and headed to my next stop.

When in Harlingen, it is hard for me to leave town without going to The Picket Fence, a nice little quilt shop not far from the doctors' offices.  I shopped and found a few things I wanted and then the ladies mentioned that they had not seen me in a while.  I explained where my summer had gone: elbow surgery and Cochlear Implant surgery and assorted trips to Houston.  Also, I had not really been able to do much sewing with the elbow problem.  Of course they wanted to know all about what was going on, so I filled them in.   Ever wonder what I buy when I go to a quilt shop?  Check out the photo of today's purchases.  There are a lot of great new Texas fabrics on the market this year!

It is almost time for hummingbird migration and I need another hummingbird feeder, so I stopped at Lowe's in Harlingen to look for one.  I didn't find what I wanted so I headed home and picked up my supper on the way.  Ron came in later and again, we must have talked for over an hour.  He had sat down at the computer and I had about half of this blog written.  He started reading and laughing.  I asked him if I was right in what I said.  He thought a minute and said, yes, I was.  I told him in the past he would have come in and told me that he was home and then gone to his study for the evening.  He said, yes, that was probably true.  Instead he had sat down and talked and talked and listened and listened (maybe not in that order).  We have a lot of catching up to do. 


  1. Indeed you two have some catching up to do!! I'm so grateful that you do & that you can communicate once again. My first Kindle died too & Amazon was great about replacing it & reloading all of my items on the new one for me. I bought my mom one but she has trouble remembering how to use it, especially since she had the stents put in!! She has some real holes in her memory now & she is beginning to realize it, by her own comments. She had to learn to be a recovering sick person since her whole medical history was gallbladder surgery, 3 kids, & a hysterectomy with a few asthma attacks thrown in. When I get home, I'm printing out some of your blogs for her to read & many help her with her hearing problems so she knows she is not alone, tho I've assured her of it as have the hearing people & doctors. See why I appreciate your sharing of your experiences so much, not to mention, I've known both of you for forever!!! Hugs, prayers, thoughts for both of you!! Hands together!!!

    1. I am so glad we re-connected through Facebook a few years ago. Yes, we have known one another forever, but like your mom's memory, there are some holes in there. We had some gaps. Glad the blogs are helping your mom to know she is not alone. Feeling alone is so much a part of the impaired hearing problem. Give her my love and a hug when you get back home.

  2. Oh, Linda, hang on tight and enjoy every minute of visiting with Ron. I guess I miss, more than anything, talking with Gene; even if there were lots and lots of heated discussions!

    Good to see the new Texas fabrics. I have a new pattern for a Texas map quilt so that's going to be my hunt at Houston. The shop here in DS is in the shop hop so I need to check with them soon.

    1. It is a blessing to be able to visit just for fun, again. Ron tells the doctors that now we can fight. We don't fight. But you have to hear to do so.

      There is a huge selection of the Texas fabrics. I didn't realize until today that many are by Moda. They have a jelly roll set - I skipped them for now, but bought the 5" square set. I think there are 20 fabrics in it and I know it isn't all of them. There are also some large map panels of the state. Fun, fun!