Friday, November 28, 2008

I've Gained...

Besides any weight I might have gained eating holiday goodies ;) I've also gained many things, as a result of my hearing loss and even through the things I miss. Let's get right to it tonight.

I've Gained...

  • a unique relationship with my son...he often is my "ears" and as a result it requires he and I to communicate even more than we normally would...which is a great thing
  • a more compassionate son....he is so tender and aware of other's needs because of my situation. He's also comfortable around anyone, no matter their situation or disability
  • a walk with the Lord that isn't always easy but it is real...some aspects of my walk with the Lord I had always taken at face value, as far as what I believed...the hearing loss and difficulties from it, resulting in my questioning things, and as a result believing because I know why I believe them...not just because that's what I have been told.
  • a thankfulness for life would have been so different even 20 years ago...there are so many amazing ways that technology makes my life easier and allows me to frequently keep in touch with those I love...and there are new products constantly being developed too.
  • I can easily focus in the midst of chaos...noisy restuarant, music blaring...I can't hear it so it doesn't distract me :)
  • I don't have to listen to those pesky telemarketing phone calls!
  • seeing such a tender and amazing side of not only those I know, but also strangers. Just this past week, I went to Sonic (a place I frequent all too often!). I am able to order there over the speaker if I am just getting my normal Route 44 coke. I don't need to be able to hear them on the speaker for that, which I love. The week prior I had gone with Doss after school and gotten a few things there, and the guy taking my order had come out to clarify a couple of things and found out I couldn't hear. Well this past week, it was the same guy, and after I had given my order...he came out to my car and he had written down my order on a piece of a paper, along with what the total would be....just to verify he had it correct and so I would know the thoughtful is that?! I would never have seen that thoughtfulness if I could have easily heard him. People go out of their way to communicate in a kind way to make sure I understand them. I also go to a small group at church and often miss what is discussed. One lady, Emily, is always thoughtful in making sure she sits where I can read her lips and swatting her hubbies arm if he ever blocks his own mouth from my view. :) One lady Brandi, just came up with an amazing and generous idea....she is going to bring her laptop from now on and type throughout the meeting what everyone is saying so I can not only "hear" but also be able to participate....WOW! That is so generous of her to do that...her fingers will be tired. :)
  • I've seen on a daily basis in real and tangible ways the grace the Lord gives me to handle my hearing loss and other issues. He is so faithful...really!!
  • SO much more than I have lost, and I never dreamed I could honestly say that...but I can!
Until we meet again...

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Almost Thanksgiving....Impossible!

Where does the time you remember when you were younger (okay it takes a bit of effort, but I can remember a few things from back that far!) and time seemed to tick tock slowly by....holidays seemed to never get here, summer vacation was never long enough. Now, every time I turn around it has been another year. I feel like I just finished last year's holiday season. I wish I could figure out a way to slow things down. I want to enjoy each season, each holiday, the everyday moments in each day, but so often things are just a blur. This is something I plan on focusing on this coming embrace the moments, both good and bad, and enjoy the precious gift of watching my son grow up into a fine young man.

In light of my effort to embrace everything in my life, I want to do a couple of lists. The first is an "I miss" list. I've grieved this year over my hearing loss. Even though I haven't been able to hear well for several years, this year I pretty much lost the rest of it. Plus, in previous years I had other things that I had to focus on so I find I hadn't really dealt with the loss. Just like any loss in our lives, there is grief that comes with it and the sooner we deal with it, the sooner we begin to heal.

I Miss...

  • Hearing Doss' voice...especially since he's at the age where his voice is changing. I will never have heard his new deeper voice. I could always imagine his voice up until now because I can remember what he sounded like when he was younger.
  • Music....oh my I miss music. Music was always a catalyst for worshipping the Lord. It just touched my heart in ways nothing else can, and I felt so close to the Lord during the music as a result. I miss being able to turn on fun music to get me going while cleaning the house. I miss hearing Christmas Carols this time of year when I am out driving and running errands.
  • Being able to eaily multi-task. I find I can only do one activity at a time, and not even that if I need to talk during it. I used to scrapbook with friends, but now if I do it, I don't get any scrapbooking done since I have to look up and focus on the person's face when they are talking. If I am doing the dishes, I can't casually visit with someone sitting at the dining room table. I miss the overall ease of doing any activity and being able to communicate without effort.
  • Being able to talk to my sister on the phone! Years ago Julie and I rang up MANY high phone bills through our multiple calls each month. It was nothing for us to talk two hours....over important, critical matters :) It stinks that now that we have the cellular world and we could talk whenever (even during the day!) and for us long as we would like, without worry of the cost, that we can't do it. I miss when I am excited I can't pick up the phone and share it with her. I miss when I am hurting I can't talk to her about it. Of course we do email and chatting, but there is still a loss from this. You can tell so many things from a person's voice that are hard to know just by reading what someone has to say.
  • Being able to have a conversation without stressing out that I am going to say something wrong or silly because I didn't understand what was said. I dread that look I get when I say something in response to a question I heard wrong, and the person looks at me like I am either losing it or am very slow. I get now where the deaf and dumb expression comes from...though I don't like it. Because communication is so difficult, I avoid a lot of it and if not I struggle and miscommunicate many times....making me not seem very intelligent.
  • hearing the doorbell ring, my dogs barking, the phone ringing, the sound of kids playing outside, hearing laughter...

Many things, but I have also gained many things as a result of my hearing loss. My next post will be what I am thankful for as a result of losing my hearing. The Lord is faithful to give us the grace we need, and He has done so abundantly and given me such joy in the midst of it.

Until we meet again...

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Well hello, this feels a little odd writing my first post...especially since no one will probably read it. :) I am writing this more for a way to focus on what is going on in my life and what is working and what is not. Hopefully I can learn from others through your comments as well. As I said on my profile, my heart's desire is to see myself through the Lord's eyes and to let that define me.

It is so easy at times to view myself through other people's eyes, or even my own, and those views are not always accurate. It took me a while to figure that one out. :) The only one who can always see the situation as it is and can see my heart is the Lord. The world's standards are so different than mine so if I use people and the things around me as my guide, it will always be "off". I also can easily get myself in trouble too. I am a people pleaser so if someone sees something "wrong" with me then I am quick to want to change. Now of course the Lord can use people to show me areas in my life that need changing or adjusting, but just because someone says I am missing the boat, doesn't automatically make it so. I must first consider the it wise counsel in love...are others seeing this same issue....and first and foremost take it to the Lord in prayer. Now these are the things I SHOULD do....that doesn't always mean that is what I actually do....okay, let's be honest here...many times I don't. I get caught up in trying to please the person and show them how great I really am :-) rather than focusing on pleasing the Lord.

Hopefully this blog will give me accountability too. I am committed to being honest and true to who I really am, so it would get old to have to sign on here and repeatedly tell you how I have failed. ;) That will be a good motivator!

Please always feel free to leave a comment...I would love to get to know you!

Until we meet again...