Monday, October 25, 2010

Dependency on Ears is A Decision

I remember noticing a shift from dependency on my eyes to hear (lip- and people-reading) to dependency on my was frightening for me. It took several days of mind-boggling depression to really think it through -- I had cochlear implant surgery in order to hear; but, I suppose it's impossible to know exactly how it's going to affect you in every way, shape and form--one day came, though, and I knew I was going to have to make a personal decision --> "Are you willing to take the plunge into becoming dependent on what you hear, and leave what you've survived upon all your life: dependency on your eyes to hear?"

A Few Fears: 
What if there's no electricity to charge my batteries?  
I'll have to revert to lip-reading; will I remember how?
Will I lose my internal sensitivity to things?
Will I continue to notice vibrations? 
Will I hear God's clear voice?
Or will I become entangled in the noisy world? 
Will I continue to be me?

I decided to become dependent on what I rely on my 'new ears'.

It was scary. I didn't like it. I was glad and thankful for hearing; but, I knew it was going to change my life, and be different. I knew I would still be deaf. I knew I would still need to read lips from time to time; but, dependency is how we take things in, how we learn --> it's us. We're all dependent upon something, whether deaf or hearing - we learn with our eyes, ears, smell, or touch - we process information that way. Some ways are more dominant than others -- when you have to make a switch, it's not always comfy.

Dependency = the state of relying on something; being controlled by.

THE RESULT -- Dependency on hearing hasn't been so bad, especially since I have electricity that's paid for, and external implant parts that work, with spares to boot. In fact, it's made my life so much easier, because I hear sound, and things people say. I hear sirens and pull to the right before everyone else (stupid drivers). On the rare occasion that I've forgotten a spare battery, used up both batteries (I have two 11-hour, rechargeable batteries), or a part has gone bad with no spare on hand -- I am suddenly in the depths of despair shock, and forced to read lips like the days of yore.

Just like I thought, I'm not as keen at lip-reading as I was when I depended on it 24/7. I have trouble when around people that I do not know well - their speech movements and gestures. Some people, very few, enunciate clearly and perfectly, and try to meet my need in a very kind way. Oftentimes, I'm the problem by taking the 'blackout' so dramatically disappointedly that I don't give my lip-reading skills enough of a chance, and just kind of bail out. Fear does that to us in many ways, I suppose.

Perhaps one day I'll learn to become good at both. Hmmm, maybe that's the relax, and believe that I am already good at both...then decide to plunge into that.