Yesterday was activation day! It started off with a series of tests that weren’t meant for me to hear. Followed by beeps. I was told to count the number of beeps. Except they didn’t sound anything like beeps – more like head throbs. I was counting the number of head throbs they were giving me! After awhile they started to sound more like sounds than throbs. Finally, came the interesting part – going live! All I could hear was bells… not the pretty ones that churches ring, but raspy, staticy bells. At first the bells were constant. The room was small and there wasn’t much noise in there. The audiologist told me that they had a loud computer fan in the room and I was probably hearing that. That was pretty neat because even though it sounded awful, the cochlear implant WAS picking that up. This is something I wouldn’t be able to hear with my hearing aid. With speech, since my hearing aid is on, it sounds like an bellsy echo after each word.
I was turned off and sent home after an hour. Today we went back and learned how to use it. It was awful to put on because the stimulation was so overwhelming. Since then I had it on pretty much all day. After I took it off to rest for about 30 minutes and then put it back on, it was painful and took a long time to get used to again. I think taking it off and putting it back on again 15, 30 or more minutes later is worse than just wearing it, no matter how annoying the bells are.
Things I hear:
- The clicking of the keys and wheel on my Blackberry.
- The clicking of the keys on the keyboard.
- Water is VERY loud. The worst is when I flush the toilet.
- The bottle cap screwing on and off.
- I think I’m starting to hear paper.
My audiologist told me to keep wearing my hearing aid. I think that helps with picking up these sounds.
I was given 8 programs – four on each external piece. The volume goes up 10 points including 0 so I have about 80 stages to go through in two weeks if I feel comfortable enough to do it. I’m up to volume 4 on program 2. I’m sure tomorrow morning, I will be turning it waaay down. Ow.
We took a video of it. Hopefully, we can clip that and caption it before putting it up. It’s kind of funny because when I first start hearing something, I literally jumped out of my chair each time.