Today I returned to work, 11 days after my cochlear implant surgery. I had expected to go back sooner, but I can’t say I’m sorry I had that extra couple of days off (longer, including the weekend) than planned.
I walked into my office to find two huge, plastic ears on either side of my keyboard. I would have worn them, except that would have hurt my still-healing wounds…
The day was a little bit challenging and frustrating, as expected. Understandably, people were interested, if not concerned, to know how I went with the surgery and recovery. I had to keep saying, “I can’t hear!” More often than not it then became a case of people asking, “You ok?” with a questioning thumbs-up sign. And a nod when I said “Yes, fine thanks!” Not exactly stimulating conversation. :-)
It would be horrible if no one was the least bit interested — but there’s no doubt it was awkward and stressful in a way it wouldn’t have been if I hadn’t been at work! Though of course that could be said of lots of things at work!
However, Neil (my manager), whiteboardophile that he is, was in his element, scratching away at my whiteboard at regular intervals throughout the day. “What are you working on today?” he asked, before I had even logged in to my computer. Hrm…! No really, it was good to have some “conversation”, such as it was. Not being able to communicate isn’t a lot of fun.
I took some time out this morning to go to Charlie Gairdner hospital to get one last staple removed. It was somehow left behind when the GP removed the others on Friday afternoon. What a relief when that was done! It was all taken care of very quickly with no waiting and I was in and out of there in about 5 minutes. Excellent!
Despite the little break, it was still a long day and by afternoon I was feeling somewhat drained and icky and longing to lie down — but then again, I am a bit of a wimp!
I did find it frustrating not to be able to hold a conversation, and what with everything, I wasn’t terribly productive. Fortunately for me, Neil said he was fine with me leaving work earlyish, so it wasn’t as long and trying a day as it could have been.
Only one more work day to get through before activation. I may not be able to understand speech right away but at least there will be sound. :-)
Again it is just hours …. soon it will be all past and you will hear again! Enjoy it. Michael :-)
Hi Michael — yes, soon I will hear again but it is still likely to be a while before I can understand speech and be comfortable with all the noise I will hear. So the communication issues at work and elsewhere are unlikely to go away any time soon. But — one step at a time! It’s a wonderful new beginning. :-)
It’s all very exciting. :-)
It is good to read that you are getting so much positive support.
Tanya and I will be thinking of you for activation time!
I hope activation day comes quickly! Please consider adding your blog to Deaf Village (www.deafvillage.com) — we’d love to have you as part of our community!