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Cochlear Implants, hearing loss and more! I carry an interesting perspective: someone who had normal hearing growing up, lost it all slowly as an adult, then regained it with cochlear implants. So I'm deaf, but I can hear - a true miracle. If you'd like to know more about me and my bilateral cochlear implant experiences right away, my two books have a wealth of information - see the links below. Check out the list of upcoming events too - perhaps one day we'll get to meet!


Friday, September 14, 2012

Bilateral Cochlear Implants - Easy Listening Niagara Falls

That title is a bit cryptic - EASY LISTENING NIAGARA FALLS - but that's the best way to describe a wonderful four-day vacation to that most scenic of locations, Niagara Falls.  I had been there are few times in my life, but this visit, for some reason, was especially wonderful.  And that "some reason" was simply better hearing.  Aside from being bilateral - which after four years has given me increased facility with casual conversations - I also had a new software upgrade put on my programs three months ago, called ClearVoice - which dims droning background noise.  Even though that software is geared to better hearing in noise, which it does, it also seems to result in better hearing in general.   And that means greater confidence in every situation, which means casual conversations in any environment.

Thinking back - I started a conversation with someone near the falls, which meant with the roar of the falls in the background.

And then we went on the Maid of the Mist, which is a boat ride that takes you right next to the falls. 

I made sure that I wouldn't get my cochlear implant processors wet - even though they're water resistant, I wanted to play it safe. Good thing, too - because I got drenched!  We were SO close to the waterfalls that I was being doused with spray. 

So I was experiencing sight, sound, and touch - incredible!

Everywhere we went, I found myself striking up casual conversations.  Like when we went on an aerial tram ride over the whirlpool down river from the falls.  It was hard not to strike up a conversation when you're on a cable car that looks like this (that's me looking up).


We visited the Botanical Gardens, which had a Butterfly Conservatory -

and I found myself talking with children, as we all marveled at this enchanted butterfly world.

We explored quaint Niagara-on-the-Lake.

It was all quite idyllic - and I came home with a wonderful feeling of joy - at the perfect weather, the majestic sights - but more than that.  I remembered the last time I had been to Niagara Falls years ago - and the impression I retained was the cloud of hearing loss - looking at the beautiful sights, but nothing more - no connection to the other tourists around me, or even to the nuances of sound.

This was different - sights and sounds - and easy listening.

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