Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Growing up Deaf - Part 7

Getting hearing aids - Part 2

About ten years later, I finally get behind the ear hearing aids. They were better than the body aids, less showy, and you could hide them with hair. I couldn't always, since I've kept my hair short. I heard from someone who had longer hair who accidentally jumped into a pool with his hearing aids on. The aids were fine. He said all he heard were water sounds.

Even the BTEs had their hazards. I had the problem of the ear hook's threads getting stripped after being unscrewed and screwed back on once too many times. I was going to the bathroom and the thing picked that exact moment to fall in the toilet. Dad heard me exclaim, watched me pull it out of the toilet, and told mom what happened. When I flushed, she thought I'd flushed it away. No such luck, mom, but her reaction was priceless.

I had one pair somehow last me 16 years instead of the usual lifespan of 5 years, despite the abuse they got. This particular pair I got from when I was at NTID. I had one BTE fall into the water in the boarding area of a log flume ride. Despite the dunking, they worked the next day. The park closed the ride for about 5 minutes to retrieve it. In the same park, another time while on a roller coaster, one flew off my ears. It was found and was still working.

I had new ear molds done once or twice a year. You knew it was time to get new ear molds when they would cause feedback or you had to push them in often. It got to the point where I'd just delay getting new ones, and every time I'd laugh, they'd squeal, and I'd hold the ear mold in my ear. That little act was the target of frequent jokes, especially with a high school electronics teacher and a girl who went to the same school with me and lived on the same street I did.

Sometimes if someone wanted to find me, they'd just listen for the noisy hearing aids. If they were in a particularly rude mood, and it happened at times, they'd just put their open hand near my hearing aid just to make it feedback.

I'm still using BTEs today, and replace the ear hook and tube myself. What's your funny/horror story about your BTEs?

Next - Learning and using sign.


Cindy said...

I would have to say this one:


BTW, I'm enjoying your blog! Keep on writing!


Mish said...

I have not been wearing my BTEs because the ear mold was becoming old (feedback heaven!) and the aid was becoming staticky (had to move the switch back and forth before it finally stopped the staticky noises). As for the other BTE, I was horrified to find it half chewed up in the mouth of my ornery pug, Skye. The loud drawn out gasp then I chased Skye throughout the house trying to rescue that poor BTE from the jaws of beast! Of course Skye thought it was a some kind of game so the chase went on for a while, dang that dog was fast! Once I retrieved the BTE from the mouth, I tried in vain to save it. Nope, I had to put it to rest....*sighs*. Lesson learned! Always put BTEs up and away from the animals!

I sure do miss wearing them! It is very expensive to get them replaced....my husband's insurance doesn't cover hearing aids at all.

However, now that I watch my nieces in addition to my two girls everyday, I am enjoying the peace and quiet! I do not have to hear "Aunt Mishy, tell her stooooooop!" or "Mommy, she's touching me!". ;)

Keep on writing! :)

ASL Risen said...

Oh well my mom finally took me out to my home audiologist and begged me to wear 2 BTEs so no one will notice my 4 breasts anymore before 6th grade. I do not like the BTEs at all because they did hurt my ears too much. Sometimes I feel more FREE and COMFORTABLE without wearing them at home. My mom found out that I don't wear them once in a while by calling my name. She was so upset with me all the times! I cannot help it!!!