I’m sitting in the waiting room at the House Ear Clinic in Los Angeles. Today is my pre-op appointment. This Thursday is surgery day. I am, admittedly, a bit nervous. Not so much about the surgery itself, as I’ve had a few of those, but because I know I have a lot of work ahead of me. In theory, the cochlear implant (CI) will “give me back” my hearing, but the reality is… I will be introduced to a brand new type of sound. An electronic sound that is foreign to my brain. The first six months, approximately, of “hearing” again, will actually be spent learning. Learning what every sound is. Learning to recognize every sound in its new electronic form. I know again and again I will depend on others to help me identify an audio world again. I know this because I watched my sister, my mom, and other family members go through this before me. The advice I’ve received from them is “Be patient.”, “Be prepared to work hard.”, and “Stay positive because it will be worth it in time.”.
I know I will never have my natural hearing again. But this cochlear implant (CI) technology is still amazing to me. Even the first day with the CI sound processor should be an improvement in my ability to distinguish clarity of speech. While I am a little nervous, I’m also extremely excited! I’m hopeful. I look forward to participating fully in conversation again.
The internal device will be implanted this Thursday, After a month of healing the external sound processor will be hooked up and programmed on October 23rd.
In lieu of a photo this week, I’m sharing this video, made by my nephew, of my sister’s experience receiving the CI…