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Monday, February 4, 2013

Day 07: A song that reminds you of a certain event

The song: The Promise, by When in Rome.

This whole album reminds me of my ear surgery. A great many years ago when I was 17 I had my ears looked at. I've always had a significant hearing loss in my left ear and when I was 17 we had it looked at by an otolaryngologist. I also spent a whole day doing hearing tests. It was then I discovered how much I read lips and how much I accommodated my hearing loss (when I sit in a room, how close I sit in a classroom, how I'll face people). It was also at that time we looked into whether or not my hearing could be improved. In order to find out whether my ear could be fixed the doctor had to look into my inner ear and see what was going on and what was wrong. I had surgery and they pulled back my eardrum, looked inside and then talked to my parents. They basically said that they weren't able to fix the problem. They said that there were some doctors who could fix it, but they couldn't. The surgery was a huge disappointment for me. I woke up from the surgery, incredibly sick from the anesthesia and puking and when I could finally think again, learned my ear wasn't better, wasn't changed, hurt like hell and I was still deaf in an ear. I was incredibly disappointed and heartbroken. I also, was feeling very very aware of my deafness, since I'd had a whole day of tests and I'd been told how deaf I am and that it wouldn't improve, it would only get worse. At the time no one recommended a hearing aide or other options. It either wasn't available or they didn't feel it would help. It wasn't until I was 28 and on my own that I had my ear looked at again and was told that yes indeedy! I could have a hearing aide! That was one of the happiest moments of my life. I never thought I'd be able to hear out of that ear again. What a joy it was to realize I could, with a hearing aide. The hearing aide really did open up my universe again. I miss it, and I'm hoping once we've moved to be able to save up and get another wonderful hearing aide.
When I was 17 though, and I'd just gotten out of surgery and couldn't hear, and didn't think I'd ever be able to hear out of that ear again, I was heartbroken and sad. I was also in pain, the ear healing hurt and was awkward. During this time I discovered When In Rome and their album The Promise. I ended up playing it on loop on my tape player. With my hearing ear, I listened to this album. I thought a lot about how much it sucked that my ear couldn't hear. I thought a lot about how lucky I was that at least one ear worked. I thought a lot about my ears and the ability to hear, and how lucky the fully hearing were. Even now when I hear this album or a song from it, I think of this time period, the week I spent in bed recovering from head surgery. I also think about the cards and flowers and letters of support I received that week from folks visiting me in bed recovering.

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