Monday, September 26, 2011

My EAR in His hEARt....

Well, got my implant activated today! I've been nervous for days. Couldn't sleep last night. The closer we got to Houston, the more my blood pressure rose and heart pounded. Got to Envoy Medical and was honestly scared I'd pass out before they could do anything. Lol. They did a few tests first to make sure the device worked. I had to sit in 'the box' while they did all sorts of beeps and whistles to make sure the device responded accordingly. Then came time to turn it on......I kept moving the remote (I have a remote! I'm part cyborg according to Sloan.......all cyborgs have an on and off button right?!?) Anyway, I'm supposed to hold the remote up to the device implanted in my skull to activate it and I kept moving it which delayed it being turned on. Just about fainted, then 'viola!' it was on. For you mothers out there.......it was like that moment where time stands still as your baby slips into this world.......I just started crying, then crying more because I could hear myself crying. Then laughing, then freaking out over my laugh. That lead to the shakes and partial hyperventillating. Sloan's boisterous laugh and the grins from the docs was the icing on the cake. Then the tapping of the keys as the nurse lady did something on the computer, followed by the remote being set down on the counter.......I could HEAR it!!! Felt like quite the idiot as I left the center (OMG, Sloan just sneezed in the shower, too funny!) grinning ear to ear.........worse case of 'perma-grin' I've ever had! Stepped outside while Sloan was telling me I was whispering, and walked to the car taking it all in. Foot steps, car doors, engine starting, already tired of hearing myself swallow. Lol. I kept asking "Is this normal? Do you hear that? Does that always do that? Is there a cup rattling around in the back of the car? (WHOA). Made my first phone calls. Called Lari and immediately heard the girls in the background. *Let me take this time to apologize to anyone I've ever called while the girls were chattering..............how the heck do you 'normal folks' hear anything with them in the background?!? Lol. She had Oli tell me "I love you Mommy", then Elise said "I ove you".......I started bawling and had to hand the phone off to Sloan. THAT was an awesome moment. Called my Mom and she was like "Are you talking to me now with the new ear?!?" Called my Dad and if I'm not mistaken I think I heard him get a little choked up. Got to Outback to eat with Alexis and was blindsided by the road noise upon stepping out of the car. The place was on a service road and WOW the highway is NOISY! Hurried up and got inside to get relief from the noise. Could actually hear the servers speaking instead of doing my usual routine of smiling politely and praying to God that they haven't said something I've ignored or not answered. When the waitress brought our drinks on the table I asked Sloan "Do you think she'd find it funny if I asked her to stop slamming the cups and plates on the table?" (I of course knew she wasn't actually slamming anything, I just found it amusing) Real shocker was when she brought my salad and I started to eat. WOW was that loud..........eating a crouton is like fireworks going off. I was certain people 5 tables over were thinking 'you hear that cow chewing?' Sloan and Alexis assured me that no one could hear me chew. Sloan got much satisfaction out of the fact that I promptly started eating with my mouth closed. I've been an avid 'smacker' my whole life..........Merry Christmas, Happy Birthday, etc. Mr. Churman.....I shall not smack again! Sat through dinner amazed at all the new sounds. Ate slow and methodical and started trying to sort out hearing while eating. My brain is a little confused on how to sort out doing those 2 things at once. Would it be rude to say "Let me eat this roll real quick, then you can talk?" Anyway, got done with dinner and hopped back in the car to head home. The road noise sounds like a plane just before liftoff, or at least what I hear when I'm on a plane just before liftoff. Sloan was listening to Lonesome Dove on CD (thanks Josh Weathers! *said with sarcasm*) I gritted my teeth as he turned it up to 10 on the volume. 10! I was happy at 5 thank you very much. He swears 10 is low. I guess time will tell. We stopped to use the restroom and gas up and the toilet in the gas station about gave me a heart attack! The nurse warned me of this but I had already forgotten and totally freaked. Oh, and this reminds me, earlier when they first turned it on and I burped, totally freaked me out. I've been given a remote and I'm supposed to turn it up a notch every 4 days. Right now I'm at a low setting and they said if they were to turn it on full force my brain would freak. It's like cold water in a pool.........gotta slowly acclimate I guess? Oh, and on a sidenote.........Lady Gaga sounds horrible on the radio! Just sayin. Sloan just kissed me good night........kisses sound all smacky like....weird. I'm currently waiting on my video to upload with YouTube. Just wanted to write this down while it was all still fresh on my mind. As I sit here beating the keys on the keyboard (not really, it just sounds that way), Skittles the Lovebird has been chirping, it's so cute :) I guess I'm keeping her up. Well, my hubby is in bed........guess I should join him. I'm thinking I'll leave the device on and listen to him snore. I have to be the only wife that's looking forward to that. God IS good. Thank you to everyone who has kept up with me on this journey........thanks for the prayers, support, etc. Can't wait to get up tomorrow and hear the girls giggles <3

45 comments:

  1. Sarah I'm so Happy for you ..I feel Blessed to know you ...You have taught me not to take my Hearing / Sight / Touch/ Smell for Granted. Enjoy your New Life ....

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  2. Sarah, I don't know you but reading this and seeing your video is incredibly amazing to say the least. It was so humbling to just read your blog about the things in life I feel I take for granted...thank you for posting, you've given me a whole new appreciation of everything. You sound like an amazing person and I wish you a wonderful future.

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  3. Several months back I wrote a poem - called "guitar" - about a little girl in a red coat who had just had her implants turned on. It was entirely fictional but it is one of my more popular poems (I am a professional poet so I get to read them to people a fair bit if they stand still too long). It always seemed like it would be a magical experience.

    I saw your video and it made me cry - a big guy like me crying is not a good look. Seriously..

    Thank you Sarah (and Sloan for filming it). Good luck with apples, potato chips and a host of other new things to listen to. School concerts with daughters, in particular, are going to be a tear-jerker for a proud mom.

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  4. I am so happy for your miracle ! I had the Esteem implant activated this summer and all the new sounds are amazing.

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  5. I saw your video and had searched to get more info. Congratulations! Yes, a lot of things sound bad on commercial radio. They turn up the gain really high to broadcast further, and if you aren't used to hearing it, it's very annoying. The problem has gotten much worse in the past 20 years on FM radio, and is made even worse by studios trying to match that sound when you hear it on personal stereos. The same songs on NPR stations will sound far better because the network has rules limiting stations from raising gain and certain other settings. Anyway, best of luck to you. It was genuinely inspiring. It's clear that your newfound sense of hearing is simply a great bonus on a wonderful life.

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  7. Really inspirational. Congratulations. Your story is spreading on Google+ https://plus.google.com/110351155041587328439/posts/dCn4wk84dd5

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  8. This is such an awesome, inspirational story.. thank you for sharing! I'm curious to know, is there music you are listening to now? What style are you finding you enjoy the most?

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  9. I really enjoyed watching your video at BoingBoing.net. and I'm very happy for you. :)

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  10. I saw your video and just had to find you. Thank you so much for sharing that moment with us. It was beautiful!

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  11. I saw your story on Daily Kos and was very moved. Thanks for sharing and enjoy your new world. As for the snoring, at least you can filter it out. I used to keep my wife from sleeping.

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  12. I don't know you, but someone linked your video on Google+ and I just wanted to say that when you started crying I teared up. Congratulations! This post is so wonderful. It really brightened my day., a day which needed brightening indeed.

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  13. Just saw your video on 'The Daily' & it put the biggest smile on my face all day. Thank you for sharing that with us & I'm so happy for you!

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  14. Sarah, I saw your video and google led me hear. You've reminded me what we take for granted.

    The LORD bless you and keep you;

    The LORD make His face shine upon you,
    And be gracious to you;

    The LORD lift up His countenance upon you,
    And give you peace.

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  15. Sarah, I am a friend of Jo Gilbert. She is so excited for you and sent me the Youtube video. Just amazing. Your post makes things we take for granted, and don't ever know we do, have meaning now. I hope you write a book from your blog; it needs to be written.
    Betty Swann

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  16. Forgot to tell you, I live in New York City, so if you need any help, call Jo and she can give you my cell number. Have fun while you are here!
    Betty Swann

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  17. Sarah, thank you for sharing your experiences with the world.

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  18. I saw your wonderful story on the news today and followed it here. So glad to know you love the Lord and are a blogger! My children learned sign language when they went to a Jamaican School for the Deaf as a mission trip with our church. I woke my oldest daughter up at 2:30 am to show her your story! First thing she commented on was how well you spoke! LOL
    I am so happy for you and your family. I blog at www.DawnOldham.com if you read other Blogs. ;) God BLESS you. I'll be following yout progress and look forward to hearing that you can enjoy eating, talking and listening all at the same time. LOL Enjoy those babies and all the sweet sounds they'll be making just for you. ;)

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  19. You are such an inspiration. Thank you for sharing your story with us.

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  20. just saw your video on youtube, congratulations on being able to hear for the first time (: p.s nice half sleeve!

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  21. It is sad that she removed my comments because she's a communist and do not believe in negative comments. How pathetic.

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  22. Wow... reading this felt sort of like those movies that feature a time-traveler discovering a new era and freaking out while he/she gets to understand a "normal" era... It's really amazing to read how you perceive the sounds of our world! You wouldn't want to live at my house, though. Every Saturday my backyard neighbor uses the grass trimmer, left side neighbors have dogs that won't stop barking, neighbohrs across the street turn up the stereo to a ridiculous volume, and right side neighbors have a brazilian percusion band (that's actually enjoyable). Congratulations!

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  23. acabo de ver el video y me emocionó tanto!!!

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  24. Thanks so much for posting... Please continue to post your experiences... First movie...first live band.. stuff like that. I tracked your blog down after watching your video... Thank you so much for sharing that moment with us...

    I'd be happy to send you music that I make and play for you to enjoy.

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  25. hey, you are amazing! really, i was crying watching the video, then watched again, and again, and again.. :) a lot of tears of joy! :)
    congratulations on your whole new life! :)

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  26. I came across your video twice this week, and I must say everyone is talking about it now on blogs.

    I'd like to say thank you for sharing that intimate moment of you at switch in. I don't even know you, but I was so happy for you when I seen the video clip.

    All the best to the future and yournew found hearing. Now I have found your blog, I shall add your blog to my list I have there.

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  27. Hi Sara!

    I have to say that your video is great, very emotional. I can feel your happines!

    But i have a question. How can you answer the questions from de doctor if it's the first time you are able to hear the sounds and you don't know how to associate sounds and words?

    Best regards from Barcelona, Spain. ;-)

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  28. You just made me cry. I don't even know you, but it makes me feel so enlightened just to have read your story. I can't begin to imagine how lucky your husband is to have a wonderful person like you for a wife.

    Wish you the very best for the future.

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  29. Good luck wish from Slovakia:) I'm glad:)

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  31. hello Sarah.

    it's amazing to be reading what you have written and remember also how I felt when I put my hearing aid and could hear things I never knew existed.
    Even without knowing you and seeing your video I am very happy for you.
    It seems that a new life is born again:).

    A big kiss and Sarah want to talk about something that is here the Facebook page
    https://www.facebook.com/pedro.m.campos

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  32. Hello Sarah! I just wanted to say that I'm so happy that you are able to hear! It's kinda weird, seeing as I don't know you personally, but you seem like an amazing individual and I wish you all the best! Your video just put a huge smile on my face! :D

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  33. Hi Sarah! Jane here coming to you all the way from Brazil. Your video's amazing. So's your description of the sounds you were able to hear for the first time! I was amazed at how little attention we pay to these things. You should put on some good music like Norah Jones and John Mayer tunes so you can experience the best sounds in the world. JK, I'll bet everything sounds pretty amazing right about now. Congratulations! Keep on spreading the word out on this. It's pretty awesome. God bless you. :D

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  34. It's really strange when you think about it. We, who have had hearing all our life, don't think about all the noise around us. I was in an accident a while ago and lost almost all my hearing for about a month. That was really challenging, and I was over the top when it slowly came back! But the weird thing was that I then heared all the small sounds I never even though about before! Makes you really appreciate the ability to hear!

    It made me so happy when I saw the video of you on YouTube! Even without knowing you, you made me really happy for you! One thing, I hope you will discover beautiful music! Best wishes, Jane

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  35. Dude you are so awesome and inspiring! Kinda hot too, and you have a beautiful family. Been enjoying your blog and the insight into this experience you are having, thank you for sharing it with us. I hope you don't find it rude that people think it's so fascinating. I am trying to imagine it for myself, to not have heard music or the voices of your kids or husband, and what that moment must have been like. God what an amazing thing to get to watch. Anyways, empathy is a beautiful thing!

    I hope you get turned on to the Beatles & some Leonard Cohen.

    Cheers, thanks again for the uplift I love you guys!

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  36. Your wideo, interviews and this blog have been so encouraging to us. My son is scheduled for implantation this Friday. We are excited and scared all at the same time. We too see this as a blessing from God as it has been so "coincidental" how things have arranged themselves for us. Thank you for sharing all of this. I'm sure this has been very excitign for you and your familly what with all the interviews and world wide attention. I'm so glad you have taken this path. I pray for many, many blessings on you and your family.

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  37. Hello!
    I'm from Brazil... and now your video is a little famous here too! =)
    I just wanted to say that I just LOVED this post... is so touchable the way you described the sounds... It reminds me that we should be more grateful for all the "simple" things of life and how God give us LIFE, and sounds, and smells, and colors everyday!
    Thank you for being a bless in my life today!
    Hope you enjoy every new sound on your life!

    I only have one doubt... sorry for my ignorance, but... If you born deaf how can you speak so perfectly??

    God bless you!!!
    Best wishes!
    Gaby

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  38. I saw your video on youtube, and once I noticed you had a blog, I HAD to check for this post! It was so interesting, funny and inspiring to read your thoughts on hearing for the first time. By the way, I, to this day, still get paranoid that people can hear me eating crunchy food! LOL
    Thanks so much for sharing this great story!

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  39. Hi there!

    Tonight I watched a film on Vimeo (kony 2012 - you should look it up - inspiring stuff) which had a little clip of your YouTube video at the start. I was curious to know more and thus ended up here! You have cheered up my day big time.

    My best friend is currently receiving treatment for a pretty nasty brain tumour which was diagnosed two months ago, and today, I took him to the hospital to get his daily fix of radiotherapy. I'm unemployed since last Friday so I felt my time was best served doing something helpful with my day. He's only two weeks into treatment so he is still quite strong, but has his tired spells. It's a long road ahead but he's a brave guy and he will fight it with all he's got. I'm taking him again on Thursday and I plan on sharing your video with him then (he has no internet connection at home - crazy, right??). It's just such a feel- good moment to watch and I reckon he might get a little lift watching it.

    Just wanted to share that. It's great to see and read about someone experiencing for the first time what most of us take for granted. I'm a musician at heart(I taught my cancer buddy to play guitar, and for my thirtieth birthday, he bought me a new guitar. There's a lot of love going on here!!), so I do appreciate the value of my hearing, but have never looked at it from this perspective before. I'm just really happy for you!

    By the way, a word to the wise. If you go to a movie theatre any time soon, stay away from the snack bar, unless you plan on scoffing your popcorn and soda before the film starts to roll. It'll ruin the show. Or, at least, I imagine it will.. :-)

    Love, luck, and lollipops to you and yours,

    Adrian. (Ireland)

    By the way, if you haven't seen the Kony2012 film yet, you should really give it a look. There's a lot of good people on this planet, and I'm glad to be among them.

    Peace!

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    1. Hi Adrian! This might sound a bit strange but do you have an email address? I read your comment and thought you seemed like a really interesting person.

      Cheers

      Carolina

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  40. Thank you so much for your inspiration and insight into what it is like hearing for the first time, it allows me the understanding for my baby who is 16 months old now and her CI's were activated on January 3 2013. I wonder everyday what the sounds are like for her and because she is not old enough yet to communicate to me what it is like for her it is so nice to hear from yourself please keep blogging. you can check out my baby's activation on you tube it is titled "natalee's hearing birthday" all the best for this amazing journey you are on.

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  41. Just read your story,and watched the video! God is Great! I'm so happy for you and want to thank you for sharing the experience. It has given me pause to be grateful for the gifts that I take for granted.God has blessed us all, I need to remind my self now and then.

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  42. Dont know you at all and doubtless never will, but I wanted to tell you that your blog and the video of you having your hearing return had me in floods of tears and I'm a 46 year old father of two.

    Wishing you all the best.

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