Okay, okay, I know this is gross, but I wanted you to see this little miracle.
This tiny scar is all I have to show for the fact that I have a sophisticated sound receiver sitting between my skull and the skin on my head. And that receiver is attached to electrodes that wind into my cochlea and will one day, when the device can be turned on, help me hear. For the first time in human history, we have the ability to restore a sense.
If you’re a confused about how this works, please see this fabulous graphic I stole:Right now the receiver in my head isn’t turned on because there is too much swelling around the surgical site. It’s just sitting there, surrounded by goopy fluid that is pressing on my auditory nerve endings, causing me to hear random beeps and whirs and, for some reason, Eric Clapton guitar chords. Is that because my head is stuck in the 80s? My darling teenagers would have lots to say about that.
Speaking of — two nights ago, as I was trying to get to sleep, I heard the washing machine running. Now, you need to understand that I go a little postal about midnight laundering — that zzzt – zzzt –zzzt makes me nuts! And why is it that teenage girls often decide that they need to throw in a load of laundry at 11pm, even though they have been sitting around ALL EVENING watching Riverdale and Snapchatting with every single friend they have who they just saw three hours ago at school?!?
So that night, I stomped out of my bed and started bellowing about “being considerate” and “managing your time,” and went by the door to the basement where the washer is and I realized – that the washing machine WAS NOT ON. I was unfairly subjecting my family to a late-night mom-rant because my bloated ear organ was playing tricks on me again. “Ha, ha!” my inner ear said. “Let’s send Heather the one sound that makes her want to bury herself alive!”
But I am getting excited about the day that I finally get to turn on my implant – February 22nd.
Too excited actually, because as my audiologist has repeatedly told me that the outcome of CI surgery can be great, or it can super suck, or it can be anywhere in between. No one wants to be in the super-suck category. And even the in-between one smacks of mediocrity and loser-ness and wallowing in the middle. All of us implantees fantasize that we will be like that smug guy at the CI mentoring group who prances around claiming, “I could hear perfectly the second they turned on my device!”
In all likelihood, that will not be me. Though I still want it to be. Though I know I am not “managing my expectations’’. Though I (secretly) know I will be one of the lucky ones. Ag.
Cross your fingers HARD for me. I have already practically twisted mine off.