Thursday, January 31, 2013

Well, its been ALMOST TWO WEEKS since I last blogged on here!!

Wow! Tomorrow will be the first day of February and in just 12 days, my life will change FOREVER...mixed emotions going through my mind! Amazing NEW ADVENTURES will be here shortly before I even know it...

Recap of this past week: 

Both of my daughters ended up with strep throat--out for two days with them and in the midst of all of this, I had time to reflect and prepare for my next two weeks and contacted my audiologists to make sure about my upcoming appointments for the pre-op. Apparently, I won't be seeing them at my pre-op (BUMMER!); however, they asked me to complete my Neptune Processor form. So what is the NEPTUNE processor...this AMAZING LISTENING DEVICE is WATERPROOF!!! Yes, Advanced Bionics (the proud owners of this type of cochlear implant) has designed the NEPTUNE processor to be worn off the ear (meaning there is NO behind-the-ear device); so basically, I'll have a magnet attached to the internal piece on the side of my head and a long cord (depends on what link you get) connected to the "mini processor" that can be worn on a clip or an armband. One of the reason I chose this processor is because our family does a lot of water activities in the spring/summer and its irritating that I can't hear when I am in the water with my family. I have to CONSTANTLY LIPREAD to understand what they are saying (b/c I cannot wear my hearing aid) or having them YELL at me in the water to get my attention. So with the new AquaMic connecting to the "water processor," I'll be able to swim, splash water, and hold conversations with them!!!

While reviewing the application, I had countless decision-making problems....couldn't DECIDE on color options for the cords. Originally, I wanted to separate the UHP cord colors from the AquaMic, so I wouldn't get confused. However, after talking with several other Neptune clients, it turns out that AB has done an amazing job to design the cord connectors differently. Therefore, if I accidentally plugged in the AquaMic with my UHP cap, it won't work!! So ultimately I decided to with white cords for all of the connectors!! Yay!

Another thing is that ALL MY LIFE, I have worn the light tan/beige colored hearing aids with clear earmolds and since I work with kids who have hearing disability and wear CIs or HAs....why not go with BRIGHT, BOLD colors---its who I am--the FUN-LOVING, OUTGOING GIRL...I don't care what others have to say! If they're aren't walking in my shoes and understanding what I go through...then so be it!!! I am STEPPING OUTSIDE OF THE BOX...and hoping that I can share my stories with many others who are making these LIFETIME DECISIONS!!

So this morning, I OFFICIALLY FAXED my application and the NEXT STEP is Pre-Op Day, then 2 days later is SURGERY DAY!  Happy EARLY Valentine's Day to me!!!

Stay tuned for the NEXT EPISODE...

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Wow, I was talking to another CI user this evening and she reminded me that in 30 days, I will become a BIONIC woman! Exactly ONE MONTH from today, my life will change for the BETTER! Oh I am jumping up and down with glee!!! I need to WRITE DOWN a million questions!

Friday, January 11, 2013

I discovered a REALIZATION today... 

I was entering the school's office lounge to fill up my 1 Liter water bottle and I went to the freezer to get ice. While I was "digging around the container" to get the ice (making lots of noise for my left ear to not be able to hear any background noise. I accidentally dropped one of the ice cubes to the floor--heard it hit the floor with my good ear. Well, I didn't even hear another person walk in and when I closed the freezer door and started looking for the ice cube, I looked up at one of our TAs and I heard a ping but was thinking she was cooking her lunch in the microwave. So I said to her did you see the ice cube on the floor (continuing to look on the floor)...she said oh I just picked it up and put in the sink! So as anyone HI person would say...oh, thank you...I didn't hear you come in! Felt a little embarrassed but then an AHA! moment....just in a few short weeks--I might be able to HEAR the person walk in when I am digging through the ice bucket!!! OH I CAN'T WAIT... 

Thinking SO POSITIVE! 

Thursday, January 10, 2013

So yesterday's mail consisted of TWO important pre & post-op letters came in the mail!! Countdown continues...4 weeks and 6 days to go!!

Now, I have to get the "little things" over the next few weeks to prepare for my surgery! I have a friend coming with me to pre-op, my LOVELY, HANDSOME husband coming to my surgery, post-op & activation day! I am a pretty happy lady! Now if I could just focus on my work and helping my students...that would be important! So EASILY DISTRACTED by this AWESOME news!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Yesterday as I was reviewing my child's "take-home folder," I saw a "New Year's Resolution" writing assignment that her teacher asked the class to complete. This is what it said, "This year I will take care of my family. But "realya" (should be really) I need to take care of my Mom." I asked her why did she need to take care of me...she said, "When you get your cochlear implant, you are going to be in pain and I want to make sure I can help you be comfortable!" What a SWEET daughter I have!! Thank you Lord for blessing us sweet gals! Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Well, exciting news came my way yesterday...I received 2 emails from my audiologist about my upcoming appointments in February. One of them was related to having a friend accompany me on my post-op appointment and activation day (which will be DONE on the SAME day!!!); the other email was about the NEW BTE processor! She said I will be approved for the NEW BTE coming out by AB in the next few months! So excited!!!

So when activation day occurs, I will begin with the AB's Neptune processor and wear that for a few months...which will give my ear a chance to continue to heal more before having another BTE "hanging" on it.

Its a GREAT week so far...halleujah, praise the LORD! Amen!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

My youngest daughter (6 yrs old) said to me this morning, "Mommy, I want you to be "normal"!" I asked her what did she mean by that....she said, I don't want you to have to wear hearing aids or get an implant. In my own thoughts, I wondered--should I be "sad" about her saying that or should I embrace it and say, "I AM NORMAL!!!"

Definition of "normal"--The usual, average, or typical state or condition.

Yes, I am normal just like my family members, friends, coworkers, and students. My disability does NOT define who I am...I am a loving, motivated, enthusiastic Mom, wife, teacher, runner, and friend to many and my disability does NOT STOP me. Yes, I have a disability but it doesn't "DISABLE" me to run, listen to music, communicate with take that DISABILITY OF YOURS and you find ALTERNATIVE WAYS to accomplish your goals! Don't let anyone tell you that you aren't any good...everyday, my young daughters say hello to my students (who are identified deaf/hard of hearing). They take the time to stop and wave to them in the hallways at school and even talk with them for a few minutes. I teach my daughters to be patient with others and perhaps explain students' disabilities so they can understand and not have a negative attitude towards others.

Yesterday afternoon at our school we had a "PARTY ROCK" for all the students (grades 2nd-5th) if they had positive behavior in their classroom. So of course, my girls did well and were invited to attend the party--lots of music and dancing. My oldest daughter (8 years old) and her little friends came rushing up to me in the gym and we all started dancing. Then my daughter saw one of my students standing there and told her to come join us in dancing and SHE DID!! That's kindness and that's showing you care about somebody and that's NORMAL!

Everyone is one is PERFECT...we all have a disability, its how you overcome and share the joys with others that makes you PERFECT & NORMAL as who you are!

Friday, January 4, 2013

January 4th, 2013 @ 5:45pm

Just got home from the grocery store and started fixing dinner...realizing I had forgotten to get the mail. I LOVE GETTING THE MAIL a kid I always hoped a relative or friend would send me something in the mail instead of my parents getting bills or something relatively important for them to read. So as I walked down my driveway in darkness to the mailbox in the crisp cold area and just happy to look forward to the weekend, there were three letters in the mailbox for ME! Nothing else for anyone in the family. One of the letters was from UNC-CH hospital (where I will have my surgery)...yay, I got the OFFICIAL CONFIRMATION of my pre-op, surgery, post-op dates...WHEW, its DEFINITELY OFFICIAL and VERY EXCITED!! What a great way to start the weekend...its SURREAL!!! In six weeks, I will be changing to a BIONIC WOMAN! Hoorah!!

Annoying Tick

January 4th, 2013

Around 11:30am today, I met with a well-known lady in our state who works closely with teachers to help bring the best in our Deaf/Hard of Hearing students. She is an actual Med-El client with bilateral implants and have been very successful with them. As we were discussing about my upcoming surgery and my many questions I wanted to ask about ranging from the after effects of surgery to how long did she actually start responding to the sounds clearly...she interrupted me and said, "You know I can hear that annoying tick behind me!" I had NO CLUE what she was talking it turned out, there was a preschooler in there working with her before I walked in and she said he was playing with a cooking timer. Once the room went silent, I could barely hear the ticking. It just AMAZED/FLOORED me that she had a progressive hearing loss that led to profound deafness and she could hear with her implants!! How AWESOME and beautiful technology can be!!! I can't wait to start my adventure!