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Jeanni Tj, Cochlear Awareness Volunteer

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My Story

In the summer of 2008, I managed to get very very sick w/just about every organ of my body involved.  Over 2 hospitalizations I received packed red blood cells to replace the bleeding from esophagus ulcers-dialysis  to help flush infections especially from kidneys.  Each time, I was out of it for 3-4 day in a coma-like state.  They loaded me w/antibiotics.  When I 'woke up' 1st time, found I couldn't hear anything in R ear, only a tiny bit in L.  After some time to recuperate, I rec'd my R implant on Apr 10. 2009.  Shortly therafter I was turned on by my AudiGal, Stephanie I could hear  sounds!  My voice got deeper & everything sounded wierd,  But I have been working with the Sound and Way Beyond program, & it has been a big help!  I hope to go bilateral this year.

I'm a 60yr old gal who has lived entire life in a Chicago Suburb on NW side.  Live w/sister (got another one in Ohio + 4 brothers nearby.  Only thing is our house is right under one of O'Hare airport's main flight paths at certain times of day.  Sometime it seems they are flying so low it doesn't look like they will clear treetops!  So, if you are ever flying into/out of O'Hare, I'm in one of the cul-de-sacs about a mile south fo I90-94=294. Let me know & I'll give you a big wave!

Great news!  I'm scheduled to have 2nd implant done Dec 6, 2010!   I can hardly wait!  More Great News!  I have been accepted as a Cochlear Awareness Volunteer!  My goal is to let hearing challenged people know there is lot of new technology and new information that just may help them!

Things have a way of changing schedules.  My new Bilateral date is Monday, Jan 17, 2011!

Monday Jan 17 is over and so is my implant surgery.  My new Nucleus  5 is making itself at home on  L side of my head.  I stayed overnight @ hospital and EarDoc was here bright and early to remove big pressure bandage.  EarDoc was so considerate in making sure he had my Freedom processor in OR for my R ear so it would be on and in place under bandage.  Now is waiting game again for activation! 

Activation Day is here.  Don't know quite what to expect.  What will I hear?  Will I hear?  I pace the waitingroom floor.  I'm called into back office and hooked up to computer.  AudiGal Stephanie is scrolling thru screens & looking for starting point to activate.  The switch goes on--and I hear screeching squealing noises, then as she hits buttons I hear her w/Mickey Mouse-like voice ask me if I heard what she said before!  I burst into tears of joy causing AudiGal to panic for a moment!  "Whats wrong?" she asks--"I heard you!" I say!  It takes a bit to calm down, and longer to hear her trying to say something else.  Out comes the Black Cover she uses to cover her mouth and she says a few words.  I get less than half right, but who is counting?  We go through the 'goodie box' as well as basic instructions.  She has me take processor apart & put back together, put in batteries, turn on and pair up processor!  My head is in a fog--so much information & I'm understanding most of it with the older Freedom.  Ask questions, get answers, she pulls out the processor & programming manuals and places them on top of everything else in box so I can find them right away.  "I've got a lot of reading homework, I see" I say while filling out registration cards and warranties for various items.  After hugs of happiness, I am leaving office with my new Nucleus 5 in place for the first time.  "Lots of work to do" I think to myself.  But know from experience every effort will be worth it.  Going to do some work on S&WB now.

We're up to visit #3 for programming.  Have only had 1 program an 4 different sound levels so far.  I miss Focus program, especially!  After almost 2 hrs w/AudiGal, I can now hear in stereo!  All Right!  I never thought that would be possible again.  Also, I now have all 4 programs, and trying to get Freedom and Nucleus to work together is a challenge!  Sound range from low tones to high pitch tones has increased alot, as also word discrimination.  AudiGal & I both like the progress!

Cannot believe all the changes that have taken place since July '08 to present (July, 2011).  Now am bilateral CI'd.  Went to  Washington DC for HLAA Convention by myself.  Inching my way back into real life again, doing things I thought were forever gone.  Learning to use CIs more and more!  Thank you, God, for all these wonderful blessings that came along with the challenges!

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