Sunday, October 19, 2008


Yes, I have NEWS! Some really GOOD news! :-)

So, on the way home from work on Thursday I was talking to my Mom on my cell phone. I use the t-link when I talk on my cell phone. I put my hearing aid on T-coil and can use the phone pretty well with that. Well, after talking to my Mom I thought maybe I'll try my cell phone/t-link with the CI. So, I told my husband to use the home phone to call me on my cell phone. I knew it would sound bad and that I wouldn't understand anything. W-R-O-N-G! Well, it did sound bad but I heard everything he said. I even went outside to make sure I wasn't hearing him in the other room. I was so excited that I called my sister Liz and talked to her for a few minutes. I understood her as well. Then I call my niece but got her voice mail but I understood every word of it. Then I called my Mom back of course she didn't understand how I could understand speech with the CI. I've been saying (since I was activiated) "no, I can't understand speech yet". I think I'm a creature of habit and just assumed I've been reading lips. My niece called me back and I talked to her and then I talked to my friend Susan on the phone too. It was exciting. So, I DO have speech...I just didn't realize it. I did notice that when I was using the phone and talking to other people they didn't sound like themselves. They still have that helium sound to it but hey, at least I understood it. Since the t-link I have has dual hooks I can use both ears and will try to do that from now on. I think having the CI AND the hearing aid will just help me understand phone conversations that much more.

So, what made me try using the phone? Well, about 2 nights before I had Jason quiz me on some words before we went to bed. I was laying in bed facing the wall (away from him) so that I couldn't read his lips. He must have tested me for about 20 minutes or so using different words and random sentences. I got about two of them wrong. One word he was saying was "tower" and I kept saying "towel" I thought that's what he was saying. I think I should get some credit for that b/c they sound really close. Haha. Even though I did well on the quiz I didn't think much of it. I guess I just thought I was getting lucky. Now I know that I am understanding. The phone would be the ultimate test so that is cool. I go to the audiologist a week from Monday and I think she will do another hearing test but this time she will use words. I don't expect pass it with flying colors because...well, things still don't sound "great" so it is easy for me to get confused. However, before I couldn't even entertain the idea of my audi doing a hearing test using sentences and words but now I can! Yay.

I really need to go back to working on my listening skills. I spend all my spare time looking for a job. I worked my butt of for my Master's degree and I have nothing to show for it but debt. It's been exhausting and extremely discouraging. I am beyond depressed about it. However, there is only so much I can do. At least I have good news on the CI front. That lifts my spirits a little!

Well, I just wanted to share my news. I can truly remember the first two weeks with the CI and I can honestly say I never thought in a million years it could possibly get better. It's nice to know I was wrong! :-) I just remember when people told me "it will get better"...I was like "yeah right" but I willed myself to trust and have faith in those words. Thank God I did! I think it's something that you have to experience for yourself. The beginning was just yucky and I'm glad to be past that part. Whew!

Well, that's my update for now. I will try to post back after my audiology appt. on October 27th. Oh that same day I am doing a presentation for a class at the University of TN. I will be doing a presentation about a day in the life with type I diabetes. I love doing presentations!!! I remember being nervous that the CI might get in the way of it b/c I don't understand speech that well. However, now I'm not so worried about it. I think that during the question/answer time I should be okay. Of course I will tell the class that I am hearing imparied so it shouldn't be a problem.


Laurie said...


That is wonderful news! You are making great progress! The fact that you are confusing "towel" with "tower" should tell your audiologist what adjustment she needs to make. Be sure to tell her about it. That is the beauty of A/V or listening therapy. . . if one is consistently missing a certain vowel or letter sound, that shows what adjustment needs to be made on the speech banana.

Also, the hearing aid may be confusing you. It took me 1.5 years to finally try going without the hearing aid and just use the CI and after a few weeks, I didn't miss it and actually heard better (it takes the brain time to adjust to just the CI).

I, too, do better on the phone with two ears but am okay with one if I have to. I'm so happy for you!

Good luck on your presentation. . . you will do great, especially with your sense of humor!

Hugs, Laurie

Shari/"Whiger" said...

Wow, Karen!! That's great. I've thought about testing the CI with the phone, but haven't done it yet. I was just telling Hubby that the other day, that maybe he should try calling me on his cell and I'd use the landline phone, but haven't done it yet.

You know, when I had my one-month post-activation visit with my audie, I had to be audiogrammed and see how well the CI was doing-without the HA. I was soooooo suprised at how well I was hearing the sentences the man said on the tape. I didn't really expect to hear as good as I did (79%). I still have that helium edge to the voices yet.

So cool. I am so happy for you.

Jennifer Bruno Conde said...

Hi Karen! Good luck with your presentation tomorrow and your audiology appointment!

Sounds like things are going really well for you!

Jennifer :-)