I've been slow in updating because I've had to think about this thing a bit :) My relationship with my new implant is coming along slowly. I didn't expect it to be love at first sound, but honestly thought that my brain would transition a little more smoothly than it has. I still can't turn the sensitivity up without the jackhammering taking over my head. That gets old really fast. And I have to admit that perhaps I had my sights set a bit high, as I was hoping to be able to distinguish more sounds at this point. HOWEVER...I have a CD that I can play, one that I know well, and can tell which song I am listening to, simply by the way it feels in my head. I consider that a good thing, since many CI users have trouble distinguishing where words begin and end. I shushed Claire this afternoon and could hear myself "shhhhh"ing. I asked her to do it back to me and I could hear her doing it. I went to Wal-Mart yesterday and stuck my hearing aid in my purse just to see what I could hear without it. I ran into a preacher friend that I felt comfortable talking to and was happy to find out that his voice had a tone to it. It was a flat, robotic tone, but I could "hear" it, so that was good. When I dumped a bag of dog food in the cart, I heard it crinkle, and when I threw a bag of Doritoes in, they crinkled too. So we know this: I can hear crinkles, tinks, and taps. Oh, and "shhhhhhh"s. Considering that one week ago I had not heard anything in that ear in over thirty years, it's nothing to sneeze at. I go for a mapping session on Monday, and Susan will reprogram the CI with new "strategies". I think I'm going to get her to turn the sensitivity down, too. I had her turn it up when I was activated because a. I thought I'd get used to it fast, and b. I didn't know how disruptive it would be to have all those vibrations in my head.
Also, it's taken some doing getting used to wearing the thing. Yesterday I knocked it off twice...once onto the tile floor at Walgreens...and was scared to death that I'd broken it. It came with a one-time replacement certificate, but I don't want to replace it the very first week....it's gotta last me a while. My Daddy suggested that perhaps I should wear a hairnet. That man and his brilliant ideas! Since I've never worn anything on this ear (and it's on my left side, which is awkward, since I'm a righty), it takes me a while to get it on, and it makes my ear sore. It has rechargeable batteries, large and small. The large ones last longer but I can only wear the small ones, because the large ones make it too big and heavy and it's all prone to come sliding off faster. I know I can have an ear mold made to keep it on, but that's one of the things I hate about hearing aids, and I don't wanna. It's all going to take a LOT of getting used to. I firmly believe that in the long run I will be so glad I have this implant. However, to say that I'm in love with it would be purely fiction. However, Ive been told that that's the usual reaction to 'em. I don't think anyone falls in love with theirs the first week, except perhaps Ivan (who is about five weeks or so post-activation and doing awesomely!! He is enjoying music already!!). ;)
I'm doing lots of listening exercises....listening to music and to Harry Potter on CD whenever I'm not doing anything important, like schoolwork. The jackhammering effect makes it really hard to concentrate on anything, so I'm glad I have a few days off school for "Fall Break", so I can relax a bit and just take it easy and play with my new ear! :)
Your comments, e-mails, love, prayers, and mentions on your own blogs have meant so much! THANK YOU all! I'm sorry I've taken so long to update, but I like positive updates, and wanted to take a few days to sort out some of my less than positive feelings. I feel that I'm right on course, for ME. I'll get what I get when I get it, and, as my Dad said last night, I already have SO MUCH. I'm a blessed woman! :)