From Baltimore with love
We had a wonderful time at the lunch Thursday–but I would have given so much to have been able to stand outside in the bright summer sun afterwards and chat some more with Scott and his mom where the noise of the restaurant would have been a door behind us and he and I both could have heard better. There are moments where I highly regret my lupus. But it is what it is. And it was so joyful to see them. He sent us home with a collection of his photography, and he does such beautiful work. Alaska was well represented, and I hope someday to see some of it too–and I reminded him of the postcard he sent me from there when I was in the hospital the first time, of a sign warning no going beyond this point: bear danger.
A very large bear was leaning casually on the sign, all his world before his eyes.
We took Sam and her roommate Maria and Karen out to lunch yesterday as a final hurrah before the airport and then got home late last night, and on the first leg of the flight I sat next to someone who was clearly studying nursing.
Or maybe she was brushing up, but it’s always best to guess on the one side rather than the other, so when the plane landed and I could hear, I asked her if she were a nurse?
Oh, no, not yet, she said with a pleased smile, but she would be graduating in December.
Oh cool! I thanked her: “A nurse saved my life.” I told her I had been in the hospital with Crohn’s disease, I had had temporary diabetes on the IV steroids, and during a shift change a nurse I didn’t know had poked her head in the door in my room and gone, I don’t like the looks of you. She had checked my blood sugar: 32! And falling.
Oh wow! said the young woman at that number.
I have heard from enough sources that it is hard in many workplaces to be a beginning nurse, and everyone has to start somewhere–so I wanted her to come into it knowing that the patients appreciate what she will do. I thanked her for going into nursing.
She was coming to see her dad…she hesitated…and her grandma for the last time. Her husband had told her to go, just go, and I could just picture a very young couple with no means really yet agonizing over the price of the plane ticket; she had flown from Columbus to San Diego via Baltimore, a long day but the cheapest flight. I chuckled; we were coming from Baltimore to San Jose via San Diego, same reason. A long day.
With enough layover to grab a fruit smoothie from a vendor whose shop was right against the gate and get back on the next plane. I know, I know. But it is Richard and Kim’s anniversary this weekend so we will see them and Parker and Hudson next week, and our son John made the long drive home for this weekend because at the last minute some friends needed a fellow driver and back.
He is here now. We are home, too. Life is good.
Friday May 17th 2013, 9:53 pm
Filed under: Friends
Our neighborhood was built for young families.
Their children grew up, many moved away and we moved in, our youngest coming along a year later.
Our children grew up and now we have new young neighbors. And the ones who had been surrogate grandparents to our little ones back in the day threw a party tonight to welcome the new couples in and to reconnect the older ones, a gesture much appreciated all around.
I would love someone to tell me stories on our house, and we got to tell a few on the others’.
I asked our hostess about their magnificent old plum tree outside the window, whose crop they have shared so generously with us so many times, and this good woman whose children are just younger than we are said it was there when they got here. Whether it was supposed to have been a standard or a semi-dwarf, she didn’t know and I knew it didn’t matter; it simply was a gracefully grown, beautiful, leafy tree, and no matter how many plums the squirrels took, she said, there always seemed to be plenty.
My baby fruit trees aspire to the day. IÂ smiled, wondering who might be enjoying them 50 years from now: peaches, plums, will the old lemons still be there, cherries, apples, blueberries, too, now, and I still hope to put in a Comice pear. I aspire to pass along a bounteous place that will give our future owners much. (While I’m still at the stage of hoping for anything for us on everything other than the lemons.)
One of the newcomers asked the name of the type of tree we have out front: Bradford pear–but no pears? No, they are tiny wooden things barely the size of your smallest fingernail, but the flowers are beautiful, and as we stepped outside at the end, I looked next door at it and marveled at the memory vs the present. “It was a twig when we moved here. With two supports. And look at it now.”
And in between it went through this but this past March looked like this.
I can’t wait to see what they plant at this house and that house and to get to play surrogate grandparents to their future children, to see how everything grows up to be all over again.
(Side note: this site will be down for awhile today while the resident admin does some work on it. Back soon.)
Dropped off the drycleaning this afternoon.
I’ve been going to this one place for years, and the middle-aged woman who runs it always whips out that slip and writes down Hyde, A before I even say anything.
We bonded forever over the moment where, early 0n after I’d made it–
–okay, back up. Twenty-three years ago, when I was newly back into knitting as an antidote to all that my new lupus diagnosis threatened, after I got the use of my hands back after the first six months of the disease, I knitted my husband an aran. A big, cream, woolly, cabled aran. An aran with sleeves that he could fold the cuffs back on, a luxury in his eyes that had forever been denied him because of his height. This is what happens when you have to duck through doorways.
Most people are fingertip-t0-fingertip the same measurement as their height.
Back then, I didn’t trust myself to handwash a wool sweater without wrecking it, especially not after all that work (now I wouldn’t bat an eye) and I took that aran with the 78″ wingspan to that new-to-me-then drycleaner. I told her not to block it, having been warned (I think by my mom) that they would press all that glorious cablework flat forever otherwise.
Several years later, he’d worn it enough that it seemed time to get it cleaned again.
“Oh, *I* remember THIS sweater! she exclaimed, holding it out to her own arms’ length, which was a whole lot less than his–or mine, for that matter. She admired it, exclaimed over it, and oh! You MADE it?!
I never forgot that moment and I bet she didn’t either.
There was somebody new working with her today, and my friend whose name I somehow never found out seemed scattered and pulled in too many directions. Helping the kid back there with something he was asking her about, rushing back to me, finding out that no, those weren’t my shirts, oh, right, those were…she’d forgotten..she swept them into a bag and out of the way, apologizing, while I smiled, no, no, no problem.
She took a breath. All her attention was now on me. My husband’s suit? Monday, alright?
Is it possible to have it rushed by Saturday?
She was momentarily distracted and glancing away just then while trying hard not to be–but she had to–!
It was okay. Meantime, the new helper did not fall but inched ever so slowly, steadily closer, coming up on the left, holding tight to a laundry cart that suddenly seemed to need rubber stops on one side of the bottom just in case.
Saturday is fine; thank you very much!
She had to ask me my name, and that was a complete tipoff as to how overwhelmed she was feeling.
The woman I am guessing was her mother got ever so much closer to the counter on her slow way forward, her body so bowed that she could barely lift her head enough to make eye contact.
But you make eye contact with the customer and you greet them and she was determined.
And so this very tiny woman of about 90 whom I had never seen before at last looked me eye to eye and found me smiling. She raised one hand from the cart in cautious slow motion and carefully, gently, waved hi to me, and then her face blossomed into a smile at our shared sense of success.
She completely made my day. I will never forget it.
Darrin Bell wrote recently of taking care of his 94-year-old grandfather in his final weeks and what it was like to be with someone he loved so close to the other side, and in his comic strip he quoted his grandfather as saying, everything you do in life, you’ve got to be at your best.
I felt privileged to share a moment with a woman of about his grandfather’s age who was showing me how to do exactly that.
And I think, when I take the drycleaner slip back on Friday for the pickup, I will take a copy of this post in thanks. (Ed. to add–wait, I don’t want her to feel she’s lost face on the name thing; I’ll just tell them thank you.)
Happy Mother’s Day!
Sunday May 12th 2013, 10:51 pm
Filed under: Family
My late sister-in-law and I had our baby girls ten days apart 31 years ago and the girls have always been good friends.
Jessie and her husband came by for dinner tonight and while they were here, Sam called from across the country.
We chatted a moment and then I asked her if she wanted to talk to Jessie?
There was this sudden doubletake at the other end–Sam had forgotten her cousin had moved to California. And then an enthusiastic, YEAH! that made my day. People I love loving each other. It’s wonderful.
Parker bounced happily in all his little-boy-energy glory at getting to Skype with us; Hudson looked at the people-movement-and-speech on the screen with great big wide eyes. *Such* a beautiful baby. Our grandsons have *such* good parents. I love that I got to show them the flowers they’d sent.
I talked to my mom, John called, Michelle made the dinner, and a fine day was had by all. I know how lucky I am.
Good locks with that
The little peregrine eyas is back on the roof as of this afternoon,Â drenched by Glenn so he would preen rather than blindly flee at his release; he has seen his brothers and they have looked up and seen him. Dude! Where ya been!
I took a ride in the Radio Flyer wagon! You’ll never believe it!
(Actually, he rode back up in the elevator in the traditional peregrine-baby-rescue apple box. Don’t know why it’s always an apple box. But it’s always an apple box.)
The area where they shaved my scalp for skin cancer surgery, July two years ago: I’ve been waiting a long time for that hair to grow back in, wearing it pulled back from my face in combs so the gaps wouldn’t show.And then there was that time last August where we had to whack a bit nice and close to free me from the back of the hair dryer when we were defrosting the freezer. (You might want to check to see if there’s a protective screen covering yours. The hair dryer, I mean. I’ve heard from half a dozen people now who’ve had the same thing happen.)
It was time. My friend Nina’s daughter Gwyneth is a gifted stylist, the only person I would ever go to for as long as she may live around here, and I made an appointment for last Friday, showed her how things were at this point, and asked her help.
It’s still a little below the shoulders in back–I gotta do my earth mother/artiste thing–but it’s a lot shorter; she did a fabulous job and I am very very happy with how it came out. I keep looking at this one spot (and that one and that one), thinking, how did you DO that? How did you get that to behave exactly perfectly in the pattern it was going to curl into once it was shorter?
All of this is of no real importance to anybody but me, but I wanted to record it so I could go back later and see when that cut was. Also because I know how hard it is to find someone you absolutely trust with your hair, and if anyone around here is looking, everybody I know who’s ever gone to her has had the same reaction: Gwyn is absolutely the best.
Monday May 06th 2013, 10:04 pm
Filed under: Family
Parker has taken to photobombing when the camera points at his little brother. Smile! (Didn’t go through. Will have to use stand-ins here for now.)
Does anyone else remember not just playing marbles, but trying to have the prettiest ones, so you would finally get Mom’s permission and watchful eye and go simmer them on the stove–no boiling, it’s always a risk but still you don’t want a million shattered bits of glass in her pot, just those clear marbles with the thin twist of colors down the center, making them leap into crackly patterns surrounded by transparency, breakdancing into kaleidoscopes within while staying smooth and round on the surfaces. Hopefully. The final objects were never a sure thing till they were safely cooled off and done.
Woke up this morning with the mental image of my eyes close to the stove from my then-height, standing staring intently (and a little bit bored) at those small glass balls, watching the tiny bubbles forming and slooowly separating from the sides of the pan but no big airholes allowed to form (keep that heat down), waiting for the marbles to become more colorful, done just so. They took a very long time at that age and a steady concentration.
Haven’t thought of those in…! But it suddenly seems like it was early training for appreciating the steady click, click, click process that is knitting, keeping the stitches bubbling steadily up. Sometimes with a cooling-off after the finish to realize that no, I didn’t mess it up and yes this IS gorgeous.
I not only coveted my oldest sister’s prettier-than-anybody’s marbles (which is what got me to beg and plead for that one session at the stove), I wanted to be able to sound like her too, like, yesterday, at the piano, and I remember her playing Fur Elise. A lot. That one seemed simple enough to aspire to–well, the first part of it, anyway. I started lessons the last year she took them.
I just didn’t quite get to this point in that first year, though. These guys had way too much fun. Don’t miss the picture frame falling down and the window shimmying.
If you haven’t read this piece about creating a little unexpected peace on earth, I highly recommend it.
Meantime, we had a bit of drama in falcon land (link goes to the cam) today. The San Jose eyases are quickly shedding the last of their baby down as their feathers come in, their coloring darkening by the day–but their flight feathers are not in yet. They’ve got about a week to go. Eric’s photos from Saturday here.
They’ve been exercising their wings and gradually picking up on the idea. First you jump up to the lower ledge, then get down from that scary place with a whole big new world way, way down there and go huddle in the corner with your siblings, face to the nice solid wall. Later you slightly lift off (in surprise) as you flapflapflap running down the runway, your talons dragging low, not quite entirely willing to give up concrete places, then as those flight feathers keep coming in and your shoulders get stronger and your feet are tucking up better you take that huge leap of faith and reach the upper ledge your parents so often come and go from–or you miss on the first try, oops, as one of them did once.
And then at last you start keeping the fledge watchers on their toes.
They’re not assembled yet. The babies have only been reaching the lower ledge for a few daysÂ now.
Clara brought in food this afternoon, and one of the young got so excited he raised his wings for joy halfway down the runway, flappercized some more towards that low ledge–and poof, he was gone.
There were some stiff winds going on and one had simply picked him up and flung him off.
The cameras panned everywhere. No sign.
To quote the children’s book, Are You My Mother, “Down down down. It was a long way down.”
About a dozen volunteers immediately jumped in their cars and drove in to look for him.
Every year posters go up around City Hall and San Jose State University and the big library at that corner describing fledge watch and whom to report to and what to do should one see a downed baby peregrine falcon. Regulars around there know the annual drill well, and when I’ve been there, people on the sidewalk were always pointing out the babies standing on the upper ledge and the parents taking off and landing, 18 stories up.
I’m told they’re very loud and command attention, helping that outreach effort. I hope this year to actually hear that for myself with the new hearing aids.
And so 90/P–the annual schoochildren’s naming contest isn’t even over yet, all the little guy has is his band number–was found by a passerby who knew to call but not touch. He’d landed on a parking garage. Wildlife rescue got the word, who told the biologist who’d helped bring the species back from the brink.Â Glenn Stewart jumped in his car and drove up from Santa Cruz.
The little one is too young to release to the roof to flutter down into the box; he does need those flight feathers, and it’s blowing a good one out there. And so Glenn is taking care of him at home till the wind is predicted to calm down in a few days, having everything needed on hand; in the sky kennel, the baby bird won’t know he’s being fed by a human, and Clara will have no problem taking care of him when he gets put back up at the roof.
He took quite a tumble but birditude and sheer good luck won out and he’s fine and he’s safe. And in the best of hands.
Friday May 03rd 2013, 11:25 pm
Filed under: Life
Object in distance is larger than it appears.
Went back to the audiologist this morning. Got the base turned down some more and that did it at last: the new molds finally sounded as exquisitely perfect as the old, and with no dangers of feedback. YAY! Happy dance, happy dance. John told me he aspired to make that much of a difference to all his patients the way those aids have given so much back to me.
Chatted with other-John at Los Gatos Birdwatcher and picked up some seed as long as I was down there, got to share my enthusiasm at being able to hear some of the birds again. More happy times.
On the way home, a large blue rubber mat flipped up from under the wheels of the car in front of me on the freeway. I had this sudden just-a-blink to think, wait, I just had perfect, I have to have more time than that to enjoy the perfect in.
There was no way to dodge.
I slowed enough that it had time to head back downwards and under (I thought) rather than up against my windshield; phew. I glanced in the rearview expecting to see it. Didn’t. Wondered, noted the traffic might be blocking my view of it, kept glancing, kept thinking that distinctive pool-water blue should surely show up back there.Â Remembered my dad and the similarly-encountered box. (Haven’t I blogged that? It caught on fire under the gas tank. I was ten. Dad pulled over, raced back there and pulled it out and stomped it out and only then said, marveling in response to our relief, I didn’t know it was there.) Prayed.
There was no real place to pull over.Â The sound wall was right up against the breakdown lane and I’m going to open my door right into the traffic? No.
The guy behind me had pulled a good ways back, and he stayed there and nobody zipped in in front of him. I noted the sign: next exit a mile and a half. Eventually he pulled into the middle lane, sped up next to me, and looked pointedly down.
Right. I was going to pull off there anyway.
At the bottom of the ramp there was a light just ahead so the oncoming traffic would be slowing if not stopping, and behold, a pullout bulbout for utility trucks. Perfect and ohthankyou.
I got out. It fell to the ground. It was someone’s water toy, far as I could tell, a foam rubber chaise lounge–broken now. Well, gee, so sorry about that as I snapped its picture, pulled it into the dirt and got back in my car, safe now, and snapped another picture–if anything’s wrong with my car I want to be able to prove I did indeed meet up with Pool-onius Thunk.
Everything seems to be peachy fine. Just one of those weird things.
Wait, how did it get to be May 1st already?
Wednesday May 01st 2013, 11:24 pm
Filed under: Life
A new amaryllis open, another about to be, and a third coming up behind.
“Is the background music in here always this loud?” I asked Richard as we sat in the clinic’s pharmacy waiting area. I had only barely ever heard it before, just enough to know of its existence, but wow, it was enough to drown out a conversation. Who knew.
“I don’t know. I’ve never noticed it before.”
The idea of being able to have music you can totally hear but don’t have to consciously acknowledge–I can barely fathom it.
In the evening, I was trimming back the heavenly bamboo (which isn’t actually bamboo) to get a little more sunlight on the August Pride peach and snipped back some of the berries. I was feeling guilty for depriving the birds of a possible treat and out of curiosity googled the plant after I came back inside. We have a whole long row of them.
Nandina. All parts of it are toxic. Birds can eat some of the berries but too much will kill them, particularly cedar waxwings (which I love and rarely get to see). Considered an invasive species in many areas.
Y’know, I might go cut that back some more. The former owner of this house isn’t even alive anymore, she won’t mind in the least.
Meantime, the left side of a baby sweater is finished and the right side is coming along. To be continued.
Ears, next round
Tuesday April 30th 2013, 11:10 pm
Filed under: Family
Can you believe Hudson is three weeks old as of yesterday? With the best mom in the world.
I told the audiologist today that I had taken to turning the hearing aid volume down two notches to avoid the feedback and it seemed to work while not impacting the sound too much–and I can always kick it back up as needed.
He, meantime, took the aids apart and put the new molds on.
No feedback. But the sound was noticeably different. And not in a good way.
“Does it sound hollow?” he asked me.
“The base is too loud. Happens sometimes as an effect of going further into the ear, but I can work on that via the settings.”
That helped some, and I’m giving these a try, but so far I want to go back to the others. It’s definitely nice to have options, though. While we were at it we bought a clip-on bluetooth mike that I can pass around a room or hand to a speaker. Lanyard now added. I’ve wanted something like that forever and now I have one!
And: this afternoon I was looking through a skylight and happened to see Coopernicus! Perched near the top of the neighbor’s tall tree, and I got to watch as he suddenly dove down.
I walked to the other side of the house but he was faster than me, which certainly wasn’t a surprise; there was not a critter in sight near the feeder. Not even a squirrel.
Friends dropped by tonight and we experimented with/without the remote mike–either way, I heard them far better than I ever have before. Cool. Next round, hearing grandsons!
Sunday April 28th 2013, 11:01 pm
Filed under: Life
Sunday School. Dave was speaking.
Dave was in high school when we lived in New Hampshire and we knew him and his family there from church. It was quite a delight to have him end up here, well after we did. We were young parents then; he’s the father of his own young family now.
Your average microphone amplifies all frequencies, which isn’t as useful as you might think for those who are actually hearing impaired since impairment is nearly always in the upper frequencies, and when you’re hearing s and f and th sounds at a thousandth the power that everybody else is, amplifying the lower pitches too simply blasts those consonants right off the hearing chart; so for us, all a mike really does is amplify the vowels. The vowels do shape the consonants around them so at least you can make a guess at what the actual words are, so that’s something at least, but it takes all one’s concentration, and seeing the person’s face to help fill in the gaps is almost a requirement. Skip the mike? Well, there’s a reason they call it speaking up: the pitch of the voice does exactly that. Eh, it’s a given–pass the mike.
I have so often wished it were polite to knit in there, for patience’ sake…
I had the new hearing aids on.
I craned my neck a bit to see who they’d passed it to. Dave was at the far end of the room, I’d say about 20 feet away, barely visible past everybody, and I suddenly noticed two things:
The usual soft babble of baby noises and occasional chattered aside to the point at hand were absent; all was still as he spoke.
And I was hearing every. single. word.Â And clearly. Granted, Dave has a deep voice and that always helps. But in that room that I have sat in for many a Sunday for many a year, where I have heard zero whispers there or anywhere, where I so often haven’t been able to hear the person seated two seats away–no chattering with me, folks, I’m so well behaved, and too often have heard only a little of what those actually holding the mike were saying…
There it was in his hand.
Every. Single. Word.
So this is what it’s supposed to be like.
Thursday April 25th 2013, 10:05 pm
Filed under: Friends
I had no idea. I was suddenly overwhelmed at the sight of it as I sat at a red light. I keenly missed him all over again, was keenly aware of the injustice done him for which he forgave so freely, and I wondered how his wife and kids are doing. I should take that as my cue to go make the effort to find out.
They just finished an addition on the street side of the high school my kids went to, and in the shade of a massive, beautiful old oak tree there, today for the first time I saw the bench. Maybe in part because I don’t drive past there much anymore, and maybe it had been moved there April 4th, I don’t know, but I had never seen it before.
That date, I found out later from the school’s website, was officially Albert Hopkins Memorial Day and that bench had been given to the school in his honor, inscribed with the words, “In Memory of Albert Hopkins. Live happy, love freely, seize the day.” On the website: “He gave, he listened, he encouraged.”
I couldn’t help but wonder if those two rogue cops might now have kids at that school where Albert showed each child who came into the Academic Center for help that their success was everything to him. He would have taken them in under his wing if they needed anything, anything.
Two blog posts. Do I post this one? (I’m not sure.)
I told the nurse that the cardiologist she works for is so soothing. But if you want me to come in about something, I told her, you have to worry me about it or I’ll blow it off: I’ve had lupus a long time. You get pretty blase’.
She chuckled and handed the phone straight to the doctor and let him deal with me directly. He did not worry me this time either, rather, he said that that kind of description you’d have to have narrowed arteries for it to be a heart attack.
Well then, it was a lupus hit-and-run and it’s over now, right?
He thought so. Added the usual, But come right in or call 911 if anything else…
Dude. If I’d been able to call 911 at 4 a.m.-ish Sunday rather than just living through it, I would have. Well maybe. As it was, I had decided I really did need to somehow wake Richard up to call after all–and immediately it let up. Poof.Â Over. Lack of pain never felt so good. So I figured, stupid lupus inflammation, and went back to sleep.
“How are you feeling now?”
Fine! (Explaining the excitement in my voice) And IÂ just got a new grandson!
He chuckled. He’s so looking forward to that stage.
Or do I just post this one?
When I wrote about the Dancing Queen amaryllis the other day, I promptly got the ABBA song of that title stuck in my brain. It is safe to say I have never cared for that song.
I woke up in the morning and the darn thing was still playing in my head. There was only one escape: replace. I put Carlos Santana on first, a little bit louder than I intended to. You’ve got to change your evil ways! Baby!
Which is how I finally got myself to sit down with the latest yarn and start the knitting that I so much needed to do. Music is Pavlovian: I can’t have it playing and read, rather, it demands that I sit and absorb every sound I can, and I can’t just sit there (at least in my own house) without making something in my hands to the rhythm of the notes.
I ripped out the beginning four times but got past that and kept going, making this project up as I go along, something new, writing it down. Crossing that out. Tinking back. Getting it right.
I had been missing that compelling sense of purpose to the work that comes with a good project. It’s such a relief and a comfort to dive back in. I heart knitting.
Can’t hold on tight, either
They’re so good at not looking in the windows as they walk by, not intruding. (I imagine their job depends on it.)
We still have utility workers who come to read the meters once a month.
Mine has to walk past the birdfeeder.
It was a young guy this time, someone I hadn’t seen before, and as he walked studiously forward he couldn’t help but look up–and he cracked up.
Just a small slit in the bottom for the hanging chain to thread through; it’s been working perfectly for awhile now. The squirrels look down, they see the inside, and they know they can’t climb their way out of a paper bag.
(p.s. If you get a chance to see it: at 7:15 am California time, Glenn Stewart will be rappelling down to the nestbox area from the roof of San Jose City Hall and banding the three young peregrine falcons Tuesday, while their parents, who can dive at 241 mph, will be swooping at the guy’s hardhat-covered head. If you want to see it live, the cam feed is here.)
Tuesday April 16th 2013, 10:53 pm
Filed under: Family
Richard and I went back to the audiologist this afternoon. (Last week he couldn’t get out of work.)
I reminded John that I got my first set of hearing aids at 27, all-in-the-ear types, and they fed back constantly. Constantly! Just turning my head so my hair moved would do it. I asked the audiologist there in New Hampshire if that could damage my hearing–I mean, loud noises from other sources can, right, so…? She flatly pronounced it a no. That made no sense to me.
And then we moved here and I got referred to John; I asked him the same question and his reaction had been to go, and I will never forget the words because I was so grateful for them, “Huh. Nobody’s ever asked me that before. I’m going to go to Stanford to find out.” And he took their audiology department my hearing charts old and new and came back to me and said, Yes, and you’re a classic case. You need to stop using those.
I had lost 15dB of my hearing permanently to them. So I know how important it is to avoid feedback, I finished, adding, and the new right one especially sometimes feeds back.
Yes, it is important, answered John, and took new impressions to make larger, tighter earmolds and hopefully that should solve it.
He and Richard chatted while I heard zero with that stuff plugging my ears.
John, taking the finished impressions out: So the new hearing aids really are helping?
Richard answered that when I got those first aids all those years ago, feedback aside, I was dumbfounded by the world of sound. I’d had no idea how much I’d lost. I stepped out my front door into a quiet morning and had no idea what on earth–oh! It was birds! You could hear birds without seeing the birds? Wow! And I would drop a pin, just to hear it hit the floor. You really could. Who knew. I was ecstatic.
Richard said, And it’s like that all over again. All the other times there have been new aids, it’s never made as much of a difference like it did then, but these do.
I told the guy about hearing the hawk, the jays, the dog I didn’t even know the neighbors had, the high-pitched squeal today as the automatic doors shut again and again at the post office, ear-splittingly loud–in all the twenty-six years of living here I had never known that was there. Wow.
John is a very even-keel kind of guy, but by this point the grin on his face burst into a “YES!” as he pumped a fist. Everything he had hoped for as much as I had, as we had not quite dared to hope. And there it is.
But there’s a little bit of holding our breath. The new type of mold is hard and it is frankly more prone to feeding back–but it is also partly responsible for my hearing so much better. It transmits sound better. If the bigger ones coming don’t fix the problem, I’ll have to go back to the soft type. We all so hope not.
We come back in two weeks when the new molds come in. But I said to Richard, huh. They’re squealing less since we left his office.
Maybe he jammed them in there harder than you do?
Or maybe at a different angle (bigger molds would take care of those variables.)
Still learning. Hoping hard.