It is only when we silent the blaring sounds of our daily existence that we can finally hear the whispers of truth that life reveals to us, as it stands knocking on the doorsteps of our hearts.
— K.T. Jong
1. I can have peace and quiet whenever I like, simply by turning off my cochlear implant processor – this is particularly useful when a migraine strikes
2. Thunderstorms and other loud noises don’t wake me up in the middle of the night (and David’s snoring doesn’t bother me in the least!) because I can’t wear my processor to bed
3. My iPod brings the music right into my brain, via my processor, and makes me happy that I can still appreciate music I knew before I lost my hearing (and new music that I really work at getting to know)
4. I lost my hearing at the most opportune time in history – after the advent of the internet and text messaging – which has made communicating with others so much easier than it otherwise would be
5. It provides endless amusement when I repeat what I think someone said and it turns out that I was nowhere close to getting it right
6. I don’t use it often, but “the hearing impaired card” occasionally comes in handy, particularly with telemarketers who invariably immediately give up
7. Being one of only about 150,000 or so people in the world who have cochlear implants
8. Reading lips, a skill I learned after losing the hearing in one ear as a kid and then perfected once I lost the hearing in the other ear, really comes in handy, especially when watching professional sports!
9. The experience of losing my hearing showed me just how much I was loved by the people in my life and allowed me to easily weed out the people who were not worth the energy I wasted crying over losing them
10. Living as a hearing impaired person who normally “passes” for a hearing person made me realize that everyone – literally every person I come across – struggles in his or her own way, whether or not the struggle is evident on a day-to-day basis
This list was, perhaps not surprisingly, much harder to come up with than the 10 bad things. I’m glad I did it, though – reminds me of how lucky I still am.