Welcome Message

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!


Sunday, September 23, 2018

Cochlear Implants Meet Politics

I just attended a very worthwhile event -
New Jersey 2018 Democratic State Committee Conference 
- held in Atlantic City, at the Harrah's Resort & Casino.  This was my very first time attending a large Democratic convention, but I have been a member of the NJ Democratic Disability Caucus, so I felt I needed to get to know more about the political process.  Atlantic City is about 2 1/2 hours from my home, so I made hotel reservations there for two nights, driving on my own.

As always, everything is always about hearing - not always bad - but most definitely interesting.  When I checked into the hotel, I made sure I had a room with visual fire alerts. When my cochlear implant (CI) processors come off at night, I am deaf and cannot hear alarms, so this was essential. They gave me a great room - 24th floor with a view of the bay.  This room was equipped with other alerters as well - great to see them devote a desirable room for people with hearing loss.

I found the appropriate elevator (this place is BIG), hiked to my room, inserted my room key - and - nothing. UH-OH - I really didn't want to hike back to the front desk, so I looked for a house phone, and there it was, on the wall near my room. YES - I can hear on phones - YAY!  I called the front desk, was told a security person would come to my room - and she appeared a few minutes later, opened the door, and said I could go to the front desk to get a new key, at my convenience. Oh - the joys of being able to hear on the phone. It just never gets old!

And yes - the room was gorgeous - newly renovated - with a spectacular view (for NJ.)

Now I was ready to head to the Convention Center, another long hike, to attend the first event - the opening reception with Governor Phil Murphy and Senator Cory Booker.  I had requested captioning, and hoped that it would be provided - and it was!


And the breakout session of the Disability Caucus was also captioned.  👌👌👌

I have been quite successful being able to "work a room" with my bilateral CI's.  I have an "ULTRAZOOM" program setting that uses directional microphones to bring in speech sounds in noisy environments, and it has worked very well for me.  So I was mingling among all these wonderful people, networking about issues impacting people with hearing loss - and political issues in general.

And I had some great photo ops, too!

Senator Cory Booker
Governor Phil Murphy

Me with Senator Bob Menendez

Me with Senator Cory Booker

I met a LOT of people and I came away with one 
If you need any help registering or finding a polling place, let me know.

And please join me in voting a 
straight Democratic ticket
up and down the ballot. 
Our lives and our country depend on it!

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Turning To My Name: GRANDMA

What an experience I had this past weekend - visiting with my daughter and her family.  Being able to interact with grandchildren is the next and best reason to be able to hear - especially bilaterally!

My grandson, age 2, is starting to gain a command of language, and explore the power of speech.  We were sitting at the dining table, his high chair next to my chair. As we were eating, I heard him call "GRANDMA!" So of course, with bilateral CI's, I "turned to my name" - my NEW NAME - GRANDMA!  Well, he was delighted that this powerful command worked so well - GRANDMA turns around instantly when I call her!

And so, he tried it again. "GRANDMA!" And, of course, I turned around again - realizing we were now engaged in a variation of "peekaboo" - something we were already expert at. And so it went, a dozen more times "GRANDMA" - and I responded with silly faces, and peekaboo motions.  We were having a ball!

And, of course, my daughter was looking on, knowing all too well, that this innocent little game was a miracle, the miracle of bilateral cochlear implants.  When she was growing up, her mommy didn't always turn around, and later when she was a teenager, never would turn around when called.

Celebrate this miracle - pure joy.