I have struggled today.

Today has been very hard.

The tinnitus is HELL. The distortion hasn’t improved. It takes me AGES to find where to stick the magnetic pad onto my head! Purple is looking goooooood though, don’t you think? :-D

My appointment at HARC was reassuring, they have promised me it’ll get easier. They increased the levels of sound going through the processor, so it’s louder. Which is great, although it just means louder distortion at the moment. The audiologist seemed pleased with my progress – so if he thinks there has been progress, then there must be. I told him about the indicator clicking, this is apparently a very good thing!

I am really worried about the distortion. I am really worried that they are not “getting” it when I explain. I had distortion problems pre-operation, with a hearing aid – I know distortion like I know a chocolate digestive. I am really worried that this will all have been a waste of time. But, there’s no point thinking like this – if they say it’ll be fine, they are the experts so they must be right!

The Hearing Therapist gave me some work to do at home that involves someone saying words with different syllables and seeing if I could work out which of the three words is being said. There are three possible words in a line on the page. The first has one syllable, the second has two syllables and the third has three. Someone has to say one of the words from that line randomly and I have to work out which word they said – without lip-reading.

There is no “wrong” with this exercise apparently. It’s only that my brain got confused… what a lovely way of putting it! Anyway, I did well, but barely heard what the words were, more that I could hear something, and I could tell just about, how many syllables it had, you can work it out quite easily with a bit of common sense but then I had to hear something in the first place to get the thought process running right? Imagine hearing a sound similar to “duh-duh”, if the three words in the line were “One”, “Morning” and “Quotation”, then which would you work it out to be?

I got one “confused” however, when I thought she had said the two syllable word, when actually she’d said the one syllable word. As the one syllable word was “Duck”, there is often an extension to the K sound which to me at the moment, sounds like the second syllable. Makes complete sense to me, it is interesting.

The tests get harder, with the words sounding more and more similar, the words turning into sentences and the sentences eventually being the same except for the last word. I did well today, and I am actually looking forward to the challenges of the home work!

I am starting to find it very hard to stay positive as the distortion is still very bad. But it’s only day one, and I’ve got a long way ahead of me. The users of the Advanced Bionic forum have been very reassuring also. It has helped to have the reassurance, but at the same time, hasn’t been quite so good for me to read everyone else’s experiences as they all seemed to have much more success far quicker than I have. I am determined to keep going though – this time next week I am really hoping that the post will start with the word “WOW!” – that is my goal and I hope you’ll be there to share it :-)

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