About MeWife to one handsome husband, momma to two precious babies, big sister to my best friend, daughter from two wonderful parents and child of one amazing God! Join me as I blog about our life and everything that it may entail. Thank you for reading :)
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Category Archives: Updates On My Journey
‘Daddy, Watch Me’ Followers!,
After a month and a half of silence, I’m still
here….HEAR! That’s right hear…because I finally feel like my hearing is beginning to arrive (see what I did there, leaving room for a higher ceiling of hearing potential). Nice of you to join Sir Hear, please stay? So, FINALLY!, and it happens just as I am closing in on 4 months after being activated. In my last post I said I was “sidelined”, and now I’m going with I’ve “rebounded”, made the comeback and came back stronger!
Before I get into specifics, I must bring you all up to date. The last time I checked in with you all, I think I showed some obvious frustration, and that’s my fault. My sister read it, and sent me a text, “you seem pissed off”. Well…. that’s because I was, and I
am was a terrible example of a man following through and acting on his word about patience. But, the good news is, I set myself straight before it was too late. From the beginning, I said I must have patience … did I? Not so much… at least for 3 months.
How did I set myself straight?
It has been an entire MONTH since I’ve updated you all on my Cochlear Implant journey. I wish I could tell you that the reason for the long absence was simply because I was waiting to see if I could give you all a better update with juicier details by waiting longer between posts, ultimately giving me more time to see changes. Surely, that would be easy to buy into–but, that’d also mean I’d be lying.
It sure feels like I am growing younger these days. Sure, we all know that I am on a journey of learning how to hear again- and that should be enough of turning back the clock, but of course it IS NOT… now it comes the….HOMEWORK. I kid you not, I have now been assigned ‘activities’ to do in my own time, as if that ‘own time’ even really exists with two youngins to entertain and care for. I most certainly do not want to do this ‘homework’ in my precious personal time–please pay me. I’d rather wash the dishes, I don’t like being told what to do in my free time, that makes it NOT free time, right? Besides, I honestly thought ‘homework’ had been eliminated from my life once I receive this fancy sheet of paper called a college diploma! Sigh.
It’s no secret that Life is not easy. Life as a father is even harder. Life as a Christian father is even tougher.—But, Life as deaf Christian father is even more challenging.
I am on this Cochlear Implant journey by choice, a choice made by the Christian Daddy within me and because of my upmost fear of not being capable of being the Daddy that my children need me to be. Looking back, it was an emotionally draining decision, but at the same time it was also such a clear-cut simple decision — because I personally felt that if I kept my original ear(s)—I’d fail at fulfilling my duty as a father for my children—particularly as the LEADER figure in my household.
Who’s up for cupcakes, ice cream and some baseball? I am!? That’d make for one heck of talented baseball player- blasting towering homeruns while stuffing your face with goodies, and ultimately burning off the calories rounding the bases!
Okay, in all seriousness– these words do in fact have a common link, which you will figure out shortly…..
With that being said, I got remapped on Friday (August 28th), and the good news is that I can now tolerate much, much more sound than before without feeling the urge to pull my hair out (Okay, we all know that I don’t have much head hair to grab-and by choice). Since I am adjusting well–and quickly, some new electrodes were activated, which means more new sounds to once again adjust to. When all the mapping was said and done, the new program resulted in a very different compilation of sounds than any of the previous programs. Robot language-GONE. Roadrunner language-also GONE (Thank God). I can’t put my finger on how to describe voices now– but in short, the results were amazing.
AMAZING? HOW? Well in a cup-cake, ice-cream, and base-ball amazing way. No, I didn’t eat a cupcake and ice cream at my appointment (but that is a good suggestion for next time). No, we didn’t play baseball in the mapping room either. But instead…..
The morning following activation, I rose out of bed at 6am, and the very first thing I did was hook-up with my Cochlear Implant (I like to think it made my wife jealous!). So…. Electrical Currents-ON. This marked the first time of me having to actually turn the device on, which will be a routine every morning. As expected, it took some time to adjust to the electrical currents moving through my head, and loud noise remained everywhere until my ears and head adjusted.
I survived activation day without removing the device at all, meaning taking no breaks from the constant noise being transmitted through my head-all while being on the highest volume level: 10. Initially, I was set at volume 6 when I left the Activation appointment; I immediately set it at 10 the moment I sat in my car to drive home, and its been that way since. I was determined. I had previously made up my mind (the night before) that Day Two would be the same; I’m all in for this journey, and I’m going to do whatever it takes to get to where I need to be. My thinking: the only way to train and adapt to the sounds being transmitted is to glue the device to my head!
We now have a newborn! WAIT- Hold off on the congratulations! No, we didn’t welcome another child into the world. No, we didn’t adopt one either. No new pets, plants, or any living organisms. Just ME–born again at 28–at least I feel that way.
Why? I got activated!– finally!
AND…GUESS WHAT!? No, I can’t hear. No, my ear is not fixed. No, it’s not any better….YET.
I am now hours away from official activation! I’m ready for launch–and a successful launch (pretty please?). I’ve gotten my share of “Is your ear fixed yet?” and “Can you hear now?”–Well, I may never be fixed, but tomorrow can I at least have the privilege to answer those questions with- HECK YES!? Just a little improvement will get me rolling.
If you can’t tell, it would be accurate to state that I am overjoyed at the moment–Just place the blame on the wild rollercoaster ride that took place during my final two weeks of being turned OFF (Or blame my wife-it’s always the wife’s fault right?-kidding). So, what the heck happened? The last few weeks happened, that’s for sure. I’m not sure what angle to look at it from either- so, I went with the ‘feel-good-story’ angle simply because it kind of just made sense from my point of view-based of the upcoming changes!
To further clarify, the beauty of this is that God works in awesome mysterious ways and He did so by having a holistic impact on my family. What I personally took from these final few weeks is different from what my wife gained out of it, or anyone else. Now, I do truly believe her take on everything was the intended priority one message being delivered (and please do read about that in her post: yawns and burps),and I’m so proud of her! However, secondary messages are important as well, obviously- I am a part of her life, as are others–and who says we (others) don’t get a message too? I always try to find a little something in everything–and boy, did my failing ears get exposed over my final weeks.
The wait until activation day is now just two weeks away, I will be switched ON. Now, that is a thought-who wouldn’t want this ‘super power’ ability to simply switch on/off your hearing just like your living room light switch? Nagging wife-OFF. Annoying chirping bird-OFF, Sister’s “lovely” singing- OFF. Screaming tantrum toddler- OFF. The majority of people would agree that an off switch would come in handy in those situations. But for me, at least for now, I crave to hear those things/sounds, and I’ll do my best to soak it all in beautifully and appreciate it…because honestly hearing is a wonderful creation by God.
With all that being said, I can’t help but think…”just what if I could hear as God originally designed the human body to do and none of this was even necessary?” Sure, no doubt life would have been easier. But, would it have been too easy? Would I have the work ethic I possess today? The drive I carry? etc…
My point being….Aside from being a hearing man, What kind of MAN would I have been if the script was flipped? What about husband, co-worker, boss, friend, and even a daddy? To take it a step further, who would my children be? They’ve been noticeably affected, and it has at least partly shaped who they are. For example, would my 3yr old still be an overly observant, graphic, creative, energetic, and spirited child that she is? And my 1yr old son, would he be the tinkering, observant copycat that he is? But really,Who Would I Be?
Good GREAT news everyone–Mark your calendars because… on August 18th at 1 PM, I will officially be activated, putting the implanted electrodes at work and permission to begin bugging my Cochlea and transferring sounds!
I may no longer call Tallahassee my home, but I am proud to be representing the City on that August day. As if it hadn’t done so already, Tallahassee has now cemented itself a place in my heart, providing me with a life-altering experience. I will be the very first person to have Cochlear Implants activated on Tallahassee grounds–that’s right, I’m famous…okay, not quite…but it’s still a cool story to pass on. To clarify, there are people in Tallahassee who walk the streets sporting Cochlear Implants, and yes- they are real implant patients-not just fashionably wearing the head gear- however, these people were unfortunate that at the time, Tallahassee wasn’t prepared to provide them with the opportunity to have them activated locally. So, with that being said- thank you Florida State University, Speech and Hearing Clinic, School of Communication Science & Disorders for providing me with this special opportunity. You can check them out on the link below, Go Noles!