Wednesday, February 17, 2010

What Was That?

Last year, Husband got hearing aids. Through that experience, I learned a few things.

First, apparently insurance companies don’t care if you’re only partially deaf, because if you’re totally deaf they’ll pay to implant some magnetic medical device in your brain but they won’t pay for removable hearing aids that don’t require general anesthesia and cutting a hole in your head.

Second, the whole battery thing is a racket. They can make digital, programmable hearing aids that self-adjust in different environments, but a rechargeable battery is too much to ask.

Third, the phenomena of Aunt Bethany not being able to hear a dump truck driving through a nitro-glycerin plant, yet being able to hear the squeak of a squirrel in a freshly cut Christmas tree is not too far from the truth. Because though we never had a squirrel in our living room, there were plenty of times Husband heard something that I was either subconsciously ignoring, wasn’t paying attention to, or couldn’t hear at all.

Fourth, I learned that APPARENTLY I HAVE DEVELOPED A HABIT OF YELLING. A LOT. I suppose that happens when you live with someone who can’t hear for 10 years.

Husband learned a few things, too. Since he could hear for the first time in a sweet forever, he discovered that there were a lot of sounds he’d been missing. Like when an elevator dings. Or the rustle of a paper sack. The regular, plain old noises that a little boy makes. And that those noises are all normal things that never. go. away.

We’ve since been able to watch TV at a volume level that doesn’t allow the neighbors to know exactly what we’re watching. I also don’t have to repeat everything I say. And I’ve learned to speak in a normal voice again. Sometimes, anyway.

We’ve also spent a small fortune in tiny, miniscule little batteries. But I’ll take the trade off of him being able to hear any day. It’s just weird that when we go to bed, he takes out his “ears” and we both take off our “eyes”. It makes me feel a bit old and also wonder how long it will be before the teeth follow.

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  1. The older we get, the more we resemble Mr. & Mrs Potatohead.

  2. This is inspiring. As the wife of a husband suffering from "unexplained hearing loss" I am learning how to be a yeller. I don't like yelling. I also don't like repeating myself. Hubby doesn't want to admit to needing a hearing aid yet, but one is certainly in our future. Hopefully the future is near, in this case.

  3. Most of my life I have been accused of talking too loud. Now my husband says I mumble all the time. I think he needs hearing aids! But of course, I think he is in denial.

  4. Anonymous8:52 PM

    When my Dad got hearing aids we all breathed a sigh of relief because he stopped yelling at us - even my 4 year old notices now when he doesn't have them in 'why is Grandpa yelling?'