Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Game Face On

William and I will be at the hospital tomorrow at the unholy hour of 5:30 a.m.  Nothing to eat or drink after midnight.  (So, you'd better believe that I'm splurging on some Ben and Jerry's tonight as soon as William gets home.)  Surgery is scheduled for 8:00 a.m., which means that we could be home by lunchtime.  The bright side here is that we most likely won't be slogging through rush hour traffic to get there!

Yesterday at 8:30 was my pre-op appointment with Dr. Slater.  I had to sign a waiver that explained the risks and side effects from surgery.  It sounded quite accurate, if my surgery in October was any indication.  I think I had problems with every single thing on that list (hearing loss: yes (but really, there wasn't much to lose to begin with); dizziness: heavens, yes; taste disturbances: yes; ringing in the ear: yep; facial nerve paralysis: yes, but mercifully short-lived).  What can I say?  When I do something, I give it my all. 

Dr. Slater asked me how my first implant was doing, and I said that it was OK.  He looked a little concerned and kept trying to get me to explain myself better.  He said that I'm so even tempered that it's hard to read me.  (Is this true?)  But I told him that I try to be cautious when I'm asked how it's going because I don't want people to think that getting a cochlear implant is like turning on a switch that activates perfect hearing.  My hearing is still changing and likely will for a long time.

I once read an essay by a woman who had recently lost a very close family member.  She talked about standing outside after the funeral and feeling the wind blowing.  The essay very poetically depicted the woman standing in the wind, feeling that she was being bathed in whispered prayers for her family which gently warmed and cheered her.  It's a powerful image that captures the literal buoying effect of prayer.

I have felt something similar from my family and friends who have cheered and encouraged me along this road back to hearing.  Tomorrow is the next leg in my slow race, and I'm comforted by the offers to help, texts, emails, Facebook messages, and blog comments that continue to surround me and boost me along the way.

Game face on, Jackson.