Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Everything's changing

I've made an appointment to see about getting a new hearing aid. Exciting and nerve-wracking at the same time.

Nerve-wracking because I'm accustomed to my current prop and leery of the adjustment period the new machine will require. My brain will have to retrain itself on the new sounds coming in, so similar and yet not to what I once heard. I don't enjoy change.

The memory of my initial acquaintance with my current hearing aid is still fresh--how I hated that thing! Everything seemed so soft and muted. When the audiologist said that this is actually quite similar to how normal people hear, that everything isn't so magnified (who pays attention to the ruffle of papers on the desk, or the quiet rumble of the dishwasher, anyways?), I couldn't believe that normal hearing could be so frustratingly boring.

The wow factor of the hearing aid lay not in its amplification power, but in its ability to tease out the various frequencies of sound, to suppress background noise and bring human voices to the fore. It took me a long time to appreciate that kind of technology.

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