Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Living and Recovering from Hearing Loss

 Hello out there, world!  Have you ever experience a major life event
which altered the course of your life and you simply accepted it and
took it in stride?  This is just what was planned for your life and
you were going to accept it, learn it, deal with it, and move on.  I
thought I could do just that after suffering from viral labyrinthitis
in October 2013 and permanently losing all hearing function of my left
ear.  It was that sudden.  I went to bed fine and woke up deaf in the
left.  After a short period of time, I adapted to only hearing out of
my right ear and went on about finding a fix to minimize this and
allowing me to return to life as I knew it before that morning.

After several months of hearing test confirming the hearing would not
be returning and this issue needed a course of action instead of
patience while it returned, I sought out solutions.  Without any
explanations, I was given the blunt diagnosis, “you can either use
hearing aids or get a screw in your skull.”  That was it, she left the
room right after this and I had no clue what she meant by the screw in
the skull.  How frightening!  Of course, I went home, did some of my
own research and found out that the BAHA surgery was this infamous
screw she spoke about so abruptly.  With time, hundreds of hours of my
own research, and lots of questions, this screw in my head became
reality on August 15, 2014.  I became an implant recipient.  Once it
healed and I was activated, I’d be back on the road to life and all
its glory with no issues…another challenge overcome.

Then a bout of depression started to set in without warning.  If
things weren’t perfect, I was upset.  I simply was not going to accept
that activation was going to be delayed.  It didn’t work into my plans
and recovery expectations.  How dare things get screwed up!  I was
mad…livid even.  Sure, it was only going to be a slight delay, but I
just wasn’t going to have it!  Then I started getting frustrated at
everything around me.  My life is so blessed, but I couldn’t see it at
that moment.  Then in a moment of clarity, I did see it.  Physically,
I was healing just fine.  But I was taking the time to conduct proper
wound care.  What I wasn’t doing was tending to my mental and
emotional wounds.  I simply did not have time to hurt emotionally,
life is simply too busy for that!

Ok, now that I realized I had this other set of injuries unknown to
me, how do I deal with them?  Was I angry because I lost my hearing in
the first place?  Was it because it took so long and was so difficult
to get help and resolution?  Was it because I was scared of the
unknown?  Why was I so angry when life is so good to me?  In my life,
my release and escape is writing.  Always has been, always will be.
So, with all these thoughts jumbled in my mind, I sat down at the
computer, opened my blog, closed my eyes and let my fingers just type
what my brain told them.  There were no sentences or structure.  There
were no spelling checks to interrupt.  Feelings flowing with eyes
closed to eliminate distraction.  Release.  After I was done, I walked
away for a bit to cope with the drain of emotions, but happy I had
allowed them to not suppress any longer.  Then I returned and read
what I had wrote, “there are those times during the day when in
solitude it still hits us...we are forever different than before.”
Now that I read this and understood how it was changing me, it was
acceptable.  Once I realized I had these fears, pains, anxieties, and
realizations, I could then talk about them.  I then reshaped the blog
to structure, spelling, and clarity and then posted with the title,
“Healing:  It’s More Than the Physical.”  Now, others whom had
experienced the same physical obstacles could also share in their
stories of how to overcome.  Therapy was about to commence.  Little
did I know the response would be so tremendous!  Quite a few comments
were posted of people saying they knew they were hurting, but didn’t
know how or why…this explained so much to so many.  Understanding your
injuries helps you begin to treat them so they heal.  Now, we can all
heal together.  This was, and still is, my therapy.

As I continue to heal, helping others do the same is a passion I’m
learning has its own powers of pain reduction.  We all have survived
so much, no matter our story, but we all hurt still at times.  It is
ok, we deserve to understand, empathize, and heal with others like us.
We are connected now, if not before.  We lift each other without
question and reach out when it is our turn to need support.  Do not
ever hesitate to reach out, there are so many ready to provide that
helping hand.  They’ve done it for me.  I’ll do it for them.  We all
will do it for you.  Heal, we have to in order to be strong and not
bitter.  Talk, write, pray, seek out therapy or support groups, but
don’t suppress it.  We are stronger together, we have done so much, we
will do this too…it simply cannot and will not be any other way.  I
will be healed, you will be healed, we will be healed!

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