Are you proud to be deaf?

Are you proud to be deaf?  (Or proud to be hard of hearing, if you prefer a different terminology?)  No, I thought not.  I would guess that almost all the followers of this blog are people who have experienced hearing loss in adult life (that’s apart from the readers who can hear perfectly well, of course – hi there, hearing friends).  I don’t think we adult-onset hearing loss people feel at all proud.  Frustrated?  Certainly.  Tired?  Often.  Fed up?  Sometimes.  But proud?  No, I wouldn’t say that.  I try to be proud of how I handle the situation, but that’s a different story. Continue reading

Blocked ears – the update

Five weeks on from my ears becoming totally blocked after a virus, things are a lot better.  Not normal yet, but massively improved.  I can’t tell you how relieved I am.  Despite reassurances from the medical profession, it was scary.  Here’s what’s been going on since the first post.

By the end of that post I was talking about a slight but significant improvement.  Some sound got through.  Some speech came back.  But it wasn’t the speech I was used to hearing and it took a lot of hard work to understand, even sitting in a quiet room focussed on just one person. Continue reading

Text 999 (and other stuff about phones)

Copyright: Krisdog / 123RF Stock Photo
Copyright: Krisdog / 123RF Stock Photo

Are you signed up to text 999 (in the UK)?  I wasn’t until very recently but I am now.  It’s very simple to do (follow the instructions on www.emergencysms.org.uk) and is designed so that people with hearing difficulties or speech problems can easily get help in an emergency.  Once signed up, you can send a text to 999 with the information you would give on the telephone (what the problem is, where exactly it is happening and which service you need).  The emergency services then text you back within two or three minutes.  That’s slower than ringing them but if you can’t make a call it could be a lifesaver.  Continue reading

Blocked ears

Copyright: yayayoy / 123RF Stock Photo
Copyright: yayayoy / 123RF Stock Photo

I’ve had the flu.  Not a very bad dose, but enough to put me in bed for a couple of days and enough to block up my ears and cut off my hearing completely.  I’ve had blocked ears before after a head cold or a virus but they’ve always “popped” again after a few days.  This time they’ve still not “popped” nearly three weeks later and, to begin with, the loss of hearing was almost total, even with my powerful hearing aids. I originally lost a lot of hearing following a bout of flu in my twenties so it’s been hard not to fret that it might all be happening again.

Things are slightly better now but not enough for normal functioning.  Here’s what happened. Continue reading

The power of doing small things

Copyright: indomercy / 123RF Stock Photo
Copyright: indomercy / 123RF Stock Photo

A few weeks ago I received a letter from my credit card company.  They were very happy with how I was managing my account, the letter said, but they were reducing my credit limit.  They didn’t say why.  If I wanted to keep my existing limit (I did) that was fine, it was my decision.  Just ring the call centre on……….

AARGH!!!!!!!

The letter didn’t include an address to write to……

DOUBLE AARGH!!!!!

I am so sick of this.

However, my new strategy kicked in.  Continue reading

Lip reading classes rule OK

Copyright: krasimiranevenova / 123RF Stock Photo
Copyright: krasimiranevenova / 123RF Stock Photo

Since I’ve starting reading more blogs, websites and Facebook pages about hearing loss I’ve become aware of a wide range of attitudes towards, and experience of, lip reading and lip reading classes.

Some people seem to think lip reading is a miraculous “cure” for deafness.  One organisation selling lip reading tuition online markets itself with the words “learn to hear with your eyes and never miss a word again”.  Put politely, this is nonsense.  Be assured, you can be an excellent lip reader and miss an awful lot. Continue reading

Answer the phone

Copyright: iuriiau / 123RF Stock Photo
Copyright: iuriiau / 123RF Stock Photo

At home I’ve more or less stopped answering the phone.  If Nigel is in he will answer it.  If he’s out we’ve agreed it’s probably better if I let it ring.  The chances of it being someone phoning me via Next Generation Text are infinitesimally low.  The times Nigel has had to come home and solve the mystery of a muddled conversation in which I have completely misunderstood the caller (indeed sometimes misunderstood who the caller IS) are many.  It wasn’t worth it.  Let it go.  It’s a shame the Tesco delivery man can’t ring to say he’s held up, but life goes on.

However, the other late afternoon the phone rang.  It was dark, raining and I had been starting to fret about Nigel’s absence with our dog Izzy.  Continue reading