Archive for the ‘Hearing Loss’ Category

From 3/1/13

Now that I have my amazing, life-altering, state-provided hearing aids, I feel very guilty about spending all those years as a hearing-impaired person without doing anything about it.  They say that the average person who begins to go deaf takes approximately 7 years before coming to terms with it and deciding to do something about it.  Hearing loss is devastating.  There’s no way to gloss over it and make it not so bad.  Not only is it frustrating and annoying but it can also be dangerous.  Once, before I had my hearing aids, I was driving in Manhattan with Bea, probably after having taken her to one audition or another, and I didn’t hear the approaching firetruck on the cross street until the very last second, when I jammed on my brakes and let the truck zip by.  It scared the daylights out of both of us.

Now that I can hear again I feel like I should go back and apologize to all my friends, family members, colleagues, celebrities even! for making them all crazy with my hearing loss.  I know it was a pain in the ass to try to have a conversation with me.  It must have been challenging to work alongside me.  How many times did I say, “What?” or, “Say that again,” or “Hang on and tell me when I get closer to you,” to the people around me?  Hundreds, I would guess.  Sometimes I still do this occasionally because it takes months of tweaking to get a person’s hearing aids just right and my audiologist and I are still in the process of fine-tuning.

I did want to do something about it years ago, but I thought, for the longest time, that I wouldn’t be able to afford it.  My health insurance, back when I actually had health insurance, would not have covered enough of the costs of doctor visits, hearing tests and actual hearing aids for me to think it was an achievable goal.  No, I had to wait until I was unemployed and broke and then ask the state to help me.  And they did!

Still, I am full of regret for not figuring out a way to address the problem sooner.  Because, I know for sure that I ticked off a lot of people.  I’m sorry.