Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Bilateral Birthday

The day came and went without fanfare - - - no birthday cake or even a cupcake with a single candle! A whole year of surround sound made possible by the "birth" of hearing in my right ear, yet we did not celebrate.

Was it because it was the dreaded tax day? Was it because it was a typical Wednesday workday? The day that always marked the return of the hummingbirds when we lived in Virginia? Maybe it was because it was my second cochlear implant instead of my first one, less dramatic somehow to add more sound than to initialize it from silence or useless hearing aid amplification? The second child in the family has less baby pictures in the photo album, doesn't he?

A recent comment from a neighbor, "You probably hear better now than the rest of us.", may be a clue to our lack of celebratory spirit. My hearing is so normal, so natural these days that it is easy to forget that it is abnormal, unnatural for a deaf person like me to function as I do. A twinge of discomfort and anxiety does invade my relaxed state of mind on occasion, such as when someone leans over to whisper something in my ear or when I enter a crowded restaurant with ridiculously loud music bellowing forth from the ceiling speakers. But there are also times when Gerry will request, "Say again, please," and a trace of a smile will grace my lips as I marvel over the fact that I heard the comment.

You know, we really should have celebrated. Bilateral hearing is truly wonderful, and I am profoundly grateful! Belated parties are great fun, too. I think I'll drop some hints.


Denise Portis said...

Sheila, I'm thinking a belated "cake" and a balloon are in order!

From someone "hearing again" but only unilaterally, I can agree and nod in unison that "hearing again" when we could not before is difficult to explain to people.

We should always keep a "celebratory" spirit too. We have MUCH to celebrate in the grand scheme of things!


Samantha said...

haha, its funny how you made this post because it was just earlier today I remembered how my CI's 4th birthday is in a couple days! Man, time has flown by fast! But I'll be sure to celebrate my CI's/Hearing's Birthday! :)

Jennifer Bruno Conde said...

Hi Sheila!

Maybe you could have Il Divo or the John Philip Sousa Tribute band give a rendition a Happy Birthday for your Bilateral Birthday!