RE Blowing Raspberries 
Wednesday, August 29, 2007, 10:47 PM - A new sound
The other day my partner blew a raspberry in my ear :ooer: without my implant and I heard it :eek:

I remember when I was about 14-16 and I got my brother to shout as loud as he could in both ears and I could not hear any thing. We also tried turning the TV up with me pressed against the TV, and again I heard nothing.

My partner shouted in the other ear which does not have an implant and I head him say very clearly that he loved me. I could have guessed some of the words I suppose - but the fact I got it any where near correct is amazing.

I think once the hearing parts of the brain get woken up and used on a regular basis somehow the hearing improves on both sides and better hearing results.

I have noticed that when my battery goes in the processor side, although robotic I can hear with out lip-reading on the hearing aid side. Although no where as good as a processor, for the few moments it takes to change three batteries it keeps me in the loop.

Since moving to Australia I have tried to take a walk most days to explore. Itís very difficult to understand everyone at the moment. I come from a part of the UK which is almost predominantly British white. I am now living in a very multicultural city - I guess which would be similar to London perhaps with a very large oriental ( they call them Asian here (!) a label we use for Iraq, Palestine, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.) They use the term to cover Japan, China, and similar places. It gets a bit confusing! Although Australia does not seem to have a big African population, it does have a large Greek, Turkish, and Jewish community.

However, my point was due to this rich diversity of people, you get some interesting combinations of dialect and language mixed with a strong Australian accent on top of their home accent! It makes it very very heard to understand the spoken word sometimes. Australians speak completely differently too, I think they miss the end of words. As I always seem to hear the first part but never the end:eek:

I kidded myself that moving to a country which is mainly English spoken would be easier. Bah! Silly me! Still in a few months I will be looking for work so hopefully I will be better at understanding people even if I donít know what the hell they are talking about!

RE A trip to the immigration museum 
Saturday, August 25, 2007, 02:00 PM

We went to the immigration museum today and I was unprepared for the emotion it would cause me. It was probably one of the best museums I have been too, plenty to read, pitchers and props of peoples belongings and ordinal passports. History on how things got started like for incense Myer which is a massive big mall like the house of Fraser or John Lewis came about when a guy Sidney Myer and his brother opened the first Myer store in Bendigo, Victoria in 1900.

Myer was born in Kritchev, Russian Poland (now Belarus), the son of a storekeeper of Jewish origin. He migrated to Melbourne in 1899 to join his brother, Elcon, with little money and poor English not that this stopped him from selling his wears clearly he did very well.

Sidney Myer migrated with his family to Australia and sold his wears from a suit case door to door, and decided to open a shop, it was one of the first shops that allowed women to touch the products which were lace, and undies and other bits and bobs that ladies like most. Not surprisingly it did well and developed into one of the biggest chains of clothes shop around. Further searching on good old Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia states that he was a very kind man who gave a lot back to Australian people and developed a foundation to help others.

The museum is full of stories like this, for example there was one about a couple who left their country and the guy was rather worried about his wife as she was leaving her parents and family behind. Together with another guy they built a weaving machine out of wood on the promise that his wife would weave the material needed for the other guyís fiancťe for her wedding dress. Its in the museum this weaving machine, it was built out of love, and it was used up and till she died, she passed the skills on to her own children, a little bit of culture and history and a love story that will last for ever.

(I will get the names and details next time I go as itís such a big museum that itís impossible to take it all in at once)

One of the reasons I liked being there so much is because the video was subtitled so I was made to feel much a part of it as any one else. The other reason was because they showed how the inside of what the ship would have looked if you were sailing to Australia in the late 1800 to 1920ís. It made me think of my partnerís great grandmother who sailed across in a ship with her husband, she kept a diary and as I walked round the living quarters of that ship I could hear her words in my head.

It made me think about my own journey to Australia and how the immigration rules have changed a lot since 1900; the process to get in to the country then could not be more different now. Comparing my passport to passports on display in the cabinets and looking at the visas that were granted I can imagine the relief and joy that they must have experienced when finally getting on that ship Ė especially in times of crisis and war.

I have a lot to learn about Australian history!

RE New sounds! 
Friday, August 10, 2007, 12:07 AM - A new sound
:clap: Today I tried our intercom door thingy for the first time and I heard it fine so I could buzz someone in. *phew* that will save me going down nine floors everytime the door goes.

I also answered the mobile in the car coz my partner was driving at the time, although it was difficult to hear I could make out some of the simple things he was saying. Ideal if I have to call emgerency services and its a noisy enviroment!

re dog panting sounds  
Tuesday, July 24, 2007, 03:44 PM - A new sound
Today I went out with friends of mine, one of which brought her dog with her. I could hear him panting because he was so hot.

When he decided to lay in a rather muddy puddle and become and chocolate dog we took him to the lake to wash off. I could hear him coughing and snorting as he swam in the water.

It was quite fun to hear him as its not something I have ever noticed before.

I am using the phone a lot more now and when it rings I am answering and hearing the person at the other end. Its working much better with this new program. Normally I would not be able to hear it in a public place but I can with this setting. Wished I done it ages ago!

RE New Sounds 
Thursday, July 19, 2007, 03:03 PM - A new sound
Just when I though there could not possibly be any more new sounds :eek: I have since been proved wrong.

The sound of a child's buggy on cobble stones sounds rather odd!

I can now identify the sound of a running tap with ease.

emergency services sound as they should these days - and so clear!

I am hearing the different sounds of the birds as well.

Using the phone gets easier and eaiser.

My implant broke on Wednesday the screen went wonkey and the number / letter would not come up. I went to the center to get a replacement,

while I was there I asked about the multi T loop on the normal setting so that I did not have to keep changing my programme every time the land line rang. They said that this was no problem to do - the only drawback was that the setting looks for a t loop all the time - and if it finds a broken on it can cause strange sounds.

I decided to risk it, so I now have programme one with the mutli T loop thing (which intrestinly seems to also make mobile's sound better)

Programe two ardo? sp/ which I normally use on T for the land line (just in case)

Programe three is my normal programe that I had before.

Programe four is whisper which they keep giving me - but I never use.

So far I really like the first setting - and I wish they told me about it ages ago. ... 331-175914 this is the link from David who suggested that I tried this setting - many :thanx: for this advice as its brill :clap:

Re How being hearing in one ear is changing who I am 
Sunday, July 8, 2007, 11:23 AM - General
I never gave it much thought before because I just accepted that I could not change the way I was.

In order to keep up with what was going on in the world I would read and read and read. Any newspaper I could get my hands on I read. Not being able to hear the radio or watch things that were not subtitled was a major disadvantage. My peer group picked things up around them just by listening to others. I tended to be a few facts behind. This affected my school grades, collage, spelling(!) and university. I struggled to keep up, and it was draining at the best of times.

Since the implant I can be typing away and I find peopleís conversations drop into my head and I catch useful information. I am at the top of my game in my career mainly because of research (thank gwald for Google) but these days I am also learning though listening.

Itís a bit like lip-reading with my eyes closed.... sounds odd but true. I find I donít hear as well unless I concentrate on what I am hearing. Sometimes I can convince myself that I have heard something correct when in fact I've heard it wrong!! The sounds do not turn into words until I have worked my brain to translate the sounds into words. Itís still tiring just the same as lip-reading, but itís a richer language and far more dynamic than lip-reading ever could give me.

Being able to hear voices has been the greatest gift that I could ever be given, and for that I am eternally grateful to all the professionals that have worked hard to make it possible.

The benefit of the implant is all down to me. The more itís used the better and richer the sounds become. Even after two years of using it. Itís not surprising I guess after a life time of being left in the dark, that sometimes it takes time to fully appreciate the benefit of hearing.

I can now hear myself when I am speaking on the landline much better. It is getting easier to hear names and places.

I can take myself to a fairly quite place (sometimes) and answer my mobile. But if its busy I have answer and say I will call back when I have found the ideal spot!

Still, life is good, and I would not have it any other way


Re I never knew people were so friendly 
Wednesday, July 4, 2007, 03:49 PM - General
:kiss: I never knew people were so friendly. I never realised how isolating being deaf made me.

I have this terrible habit of reading a paper while sitting in cafes and normally when I look up my food is there as if by magic before me, and nobody else around.

Now, I dont always hear the first time, but I do hear a person ask me a question or try and get my attention. I tend to say "oh sorry I did not hear you, I am deaf"

I think they go back to the kitchen and let everyone else know, because they make allowances and ensure eye contact. I now get offers of water, salt, and anything else I may want.

People tend to ask more questions and appear intrested in what I am doing. They smile more and are friendly.

I think of all the times when I have thought the person was cold or sharp or just not very nice, and I think it was because they thought I was rude, stuck up or ignorant because I had not answered them - or that I was the one being unfriendly because I was so anti sociable.

Everywhere I go I find people are friendly, I respond to their questions easier now, and they smile and engage in conversation. I speak to people more these days, even a laugh and a joke with strangers over a suitable water proof coat can make my day seem less bleak.

Who would have thought that deafness could have such an impact on mood, personality, socialiseation, a sense of happyness.


RE Music 
Sunday, July 1, 2007, 01:14 PM
Just latley I have noticed that I am starting to pick up music quite well. Normally relaxing stuff such as piano has been very nice to hear while reading the paper and having a coffee.

Sometimes it has been so nice to hear, it has brought tears to my eyes and a lump to my throat! I have never been able to hear anything like it.

The other day while in my car I was stuck in traffic. Normally people at work would wonder where I was, and sometimes I would arrive to where I was going very late only to be told that the person had to cancell.

This time I stopped the car and called to explain that I was in traffic and would they be able to wait a bit longer for me. They were able to do this so I did not end up having a wasted journey. I head everyone fine. Then I recived a call to say my next couple had asked if I could make the appointment earlier in the afternoon - so I was able to call them and make it earlier. For me this was amazing because I have never spoken to them before and I had no difficulty.

It is just getting easier and easier with pratice!!!

RE Just when you think things can't get any better! 
Sunday, June 24, 2007, 11:55 AM
I am answering the land line like a pro now, and it is getting much easier to hear names.

I am also able to hear the ring tone on my mobile much better.

I have noticed that when I am in a cafe or shop I am starting to be able to hear the music. Some times it is quite relaxing and I really enjoy it.

I find that I hear soothing soft relaxing music best. Sometimes its so overwhelming that it brings a lump to my throat and makes me tearful!

It is very empowering to be able to hear as much as I do.

I am starting to notice when someone appraoches me in a noisy enviorment, I might not hear what they say the first time - but I am more aware that they are there and speaking to me! This means I dont miss out as much as I used to. For example I got ice and a glass with my water today, normally I would have not answered to the question. Or in panic said no, thus turning down the offer. This time I heard her say would you like ice with that very clearly which was a big thing for me!

Its strange how just when you think it can't possibly get any better - it does.

Re insurance and other things 
Saturday, June 2, 2007, 01:48 PM
Nikki mentioned her center advised her to insure her implant. When I first approached my center about insurance when they gave me the plant, they advised me that it was unnecessary to insure it as the NHS would give me a new one on the event that it was broken as long as it was due to wear and tear or accidental breakage.

So far the implant has creaked on a number of occasions due to a design fault and the coil has split also due to a design fault, on two occasions my battery pack gave up the will to live and the NHS has replaced these.

I did have a bit of a battle getting them to give me a spare coil the last time I took my broken one back to be replaced. (they have in the past always given me two) their argument was because coils cost £80 and mine was that if I only have one coil and it breaks it will cost me more than £80 to take the day of work to drive and collect a new coil. I asked for a catalogue so that I could order my own as the cochlear website does not seem to sell on line and I was more than happy to pay for my spare if thatís what it took. In the end they agreed I could have a spare but it would be one of the longer wired stock they had because no body wanted them!!

The only complaint I have is everybody pays their way for the NHS and therefore we should expect a good service when we need it. Money is wasted all the time for various reasons and the NHS should not be struggling like it is and therefore itís not a good enough excuse for a less than good service.

As it happens I have insured my processor for theft and loss, on the off changes that while I am on holiday somebody steals it while I am in the sea snorkeling or something. Or I accidentally lose the replacement some how or its taken from the hotel (having the holiday loaner cochlear implant did make us nervous so we locked it in the hotel safe)

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