Wednesday, September 17, 2008


It has been a while since I've posted. Sorry about neglecting the blog! It isn't intentional. I had a mapping last Thursday. I also had a hearing test. I did not have a speech test. All I did was listen to the beeps and the results were astounding. I will try to post my previous hearing test and the current one so everyone can see it. I expected it to be a moderate hearing loss....maybe a little bit of mild in there. However, I have a mild hearing loss with a little bit of "normal" hearing. Haha. I thought I was going to faint when she showed me the audiogram. It's definitely good news. I needed that encouragement. I really did. I still have long way to go...miles and miles and miles to go. I'm still not understanding speech yet. However, it's nice to feel encouraged. So, now I know why I'm hearing so many things! It's b/c I have a mild hearing loss! That will make you hear lots of things. :-)

On Thursday we added some programs to the processor. So, I have autosensensitivity now. NICE! I like it. She took ADRO out and put in autosensensitivity only since I liked it so much. However, when I go back next Thursday I'm going to ask for a program with autosensensitivity and ADRO together. I want to compare the two. I have BEAM as P3 and I only used it at Church for the sermon but it worked. Regardless of the program the music was just LOUD. However, I was able sit through it. I figured it's not like it's going to blow my ear drum out or anything. :-) I don't wear my hearing aid at all. In fact, I just got a new ear mold for it and it needs to be shaved a little bit b/c it's causing a sore in my ear. I don't wear it b/c my brain just depends on it too much. Don't get me wrong...I WILL wear it but I want to get used to the implant. I have made that a goal for myself and I want to stick to it. I usually keep the hearing aid in my ear and turn it on when I need it but b/c it's causing the sore I just leave it out for now. I will get the ear mold adjusted when I go to the audiologist next week. No problem! It truly has been an amazing few weeks. I just typed months and had to correct it. I realized the implant hasn't been activated a month yet. I won't count the "initial" activation since that didn't go very well. I was able to start wearing it on August in four days I will reach my one month mark. I admit that the changes that have happened are so subtle. Lets not forget the ROAR (chain saw) sound I had. I never thought it was going to go away. I hated it...gosh it was horrible. Today, I have no idea where that sound went and I don't even remember it going away. It just happens and it's hard to pinpoint when it happens. The air conditioner and the fridge used to drive me batty and now I don't even realize they are on unless and I stop and listen for it. The brain really does adapt. Of course have the autosensitivity is helping soften some sounds. I'm sure when I get the ADRO back on I will go crazy again for a few days.

The other day I was in the living room and I said to my husband "Do I hear fireworks going off"? He stopped and listened and said "I don't hear anything" and then he leaned closer to the window and looked at me and said "Wow, there ARE fireworks going off and you heard them and I didn't". That was funny. I think the biggest shock happened last week at work. You have to remember I just had a mapping on Thursday so it takes a few days for me to adjust. On Friday afternoon I kept hearing this "noise". It wasn't loud or painful. I could just hear "something" that I haven't heard before while working. I finally asked my co-worker "What is that noise and I tried to describe it. Immediately he said "It's the lawn mower outside". I about fell out of my chair. I work in a building that is HUGE! In fact it used to be a Lowe's! Do you know how big this building is? I heard a lawn mower OUTSIDE...BEHIND the building. I went looking for it. We don't have windows in the building b/c it's more like a warehouse turned into an office building. Well, my other co-worker tried to help me find it too but we didn't. All we know is that the lawnmower was behind the building. I was truly amazed I heard that. It was just bizarre. When the sound stopped I realized it immediately. As I said it wasn't "loud". I was just aware of it. That was a "moment". :-)

I have lots of moments but again they are subtle and sneak up on me. As I said, I do have a long way to go as far as speech goes. I think I am starting to trust it will happen eventually. This doesn't mean I don't do listening skills b/c I do. It also doesn't mean that I don't get frustrated or become impatient b/c I do! I just remember I never thought the roar would go away and it did! :-) Plus, I am in the speech range according to my audiogram. I definitely have hope...

My new audiogram is below. The audiogram on the top is the old one and the audiogram below that is the new one. I think the greatest change you will notice...well the whole thing is improved across the board but if you look at the high pitches I scored 120db before the CI. You may not be able to tell but the arrow is pointing downward (so it's below the charts). In the exact same spot on the new audiogram I'm at 20db. I went from 120db to 20db. LOL. Isn't that just astounding? In case you didn't know...normal hearing starts at anything at 20db and up is normal range.
Most of the sounds on my new audiogram are right about 30db "mild" hearing loss. I have a very small bit at normal but it still blows me away. I will take "mild" hearing over that other audiogram any day of the week! :-)

The orange highlight is the right ear (implanted ear).
They tested both ears on the older audiogram and
I wanted to make sure people knew the
highlighted part is the implanted ear.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Listening Practice...

Well, last night I decided to try listening practice again. I took a break for a couple of days...maybe more than a "couple" of days. My husband would quiz me on words from time to time when I asked him but that was it. I always got them wrong. As I mentioned in my last post I was frustrated so I took a break from it.

I have been using the microphone that connects to the processor and it eliminates background noise. That helps a little when reading books (my husband reads them and I follow along). So, last night I decided to use some websites for listening practice. I used the stereo connection to hook up to my laptop. This connects to the processor and then directly to a stereo, or laptop...anything with a stereo connection. Well, it was surprising. I understood a majority of the testing. In fact, there were tests that would cause guessing to be hard since you had several options to choose from. Some of it is still "guessing". People don't necessarily focus on EVERY word but the important ones. I'm not fooled though I know that I was guessing on some things. However, what a change. At least I had positive results whereas last week I got every one of them wrong...except this time I was directly connected to the laptop. Using that connection eliminates most of the background noise. My husband also tested me some last night using sentences and words. I did wasn't 100% and he normally had to repeat words about 3 times and then I would get it. It's like my brain needs a few times to get it. When I'm testing without the microphone I normally don't understand much which is annoying. However, it is still encouraging that I am able to understand things...although it's simple things. Simple things are better than "nothing"!!!

I just wanted to share that encouraging news. I know I mentioned this in my last post but I do go to the audiologist on Thursday. I'm hoping that we can add some actual programs besides ADRO. Hopefully that will happen. I'm still on P3 and hope to move up to P4 by's LOUD though. So, we'll see what happens. Thursday is going to be a busy day. I go to the audiologist, then to work, then meeting a friend for dinner, then going directly to the HLAA meeting. It's our first HLAA meeting. We took a break during the summer and I'm so excited to go back. My husband is coming along as well. He's so supportive! Gotta love him for it.

Well...I'm signing off for now. Gotta go play Guitar Hero with my husband. He got the game/guitars for his birthday and it's been extremely addictive!!!! We can't stop playing the game! I'll be sure to post back on Thursday to share my next mapping experience.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Same ol' Same ol'....

It's been a while since I posted. I don't like be silent for too long. Nothing much has really changed since my last post. I did have a mapping last Thursday but all we did was turn things up a notch. I had to get used to it all over again...and I have. I've already moved up to P2 this time around as well. Again, sounds are still the same just louder. I am still very aware of the air conditioner and the fridge but that's okay. Voices still have that mickey-mouse-on-helium through-static-type vibe to it. I don't understand speech at all and it's getting quite frustrating. In fact, the other night when Jason and I were going through one of the children's books I got down right frustrated. I took a break the last two days. A break from reading the book not from the CI's. I'm not that crazy! Today, I laid in bed most of the day and read a book and it was glorious! I just need to relax and not do anything and I did exactly that. Of course I go back to work tomorrow. At my next mapping we are hoping to introduce some actual programs that can be used besides ADRO. However she wants me to try to get to P4 by my next appt. but if I can't that's okay. I have tired P4 and WOW that's LOUD!!!! I will slowly try to move up but I am not making any promises. Haha. I am hoping that we can tweak something besides loudness. I feel like I am not going to understand speech unless we are able to change something besides volume. My next mapping is September 11th...hopefully something good will come from it despite it being the anniversary of something terrible.

Well...signing out for now....