I finally got my cochlear implant, and on July 1 they turned it on. The surgery on June 20 had gone well, but like everyone else who must await activation, I had no idea how well it would work in restoring my hearing once it went live.
But when the audiologist attached the external processor and activated it, I experienced a modern miracle. After about 20 seconds of some electrical whining and echoing, my brain started tuning directly in to all the sounds in the room. When the audiologist started speaking to me, I could actually understand what she was saying. My wife started speaking, and for the first time in years I understood what she was saying without having to look at her. The audiologist got behind me, turned her back to me, and spoke to the wall, and I could still understand what she was saying.
It’s been nearly a month now, and I’m still overwhelmed. [Continue reading]