Why Me?

So here I am, just after 1 in the morning, lying awake.
I think writing is sometimes therapeutic, so I’m going to write. Maybe by writing and getting this thing off my chest, I can help myself, and, hopefully, help someone else sometime.

As you might have gathered if you have read some of my other posts, I am blind. I have been blind practically since birth. Today, I love to joke about and laugh about my blindness, and I feel more and more comfortable in my own skin. Has it always been that easy? No.

Contrary to what people in the blindness field sometimes think, people who have been blind since birth experience the same feelings of loss that a person blinded later in life experience. We go through the same anger, depression, the same asking why. Why don’t the other children want to play with me? Why must I be different? Why me?

But as it is with everything in life, you either have to make do or make die.

I guess the question that helped me put everything into perspective was this: “If not me, who then?” I couldn’t think of any-one.

And, honestly, what doesn’t kill you makes you either stronger or fat — and I’m both. 🙂

In my high school years, I battled with hearing loss. It was very traumatic, and was eventually sorted out by putting grommets in my ears to drain the fluid off of my eardrums.

I have had numerous ups and downs with my ears, and numerous operations. It has put me in some awful situations; the trouble with hearing loss is that you don’t notice how little you hear, until it stares you in the face. People think you’re rude, because you don’t greet them, and it sometimes have to sit virtually on someone’s lap so that you can follow what he/she says.

It also isolates you socially. When I battled with my hearing, I think it was the year before last, I forced myself to participate socially. I forced myself to go to home cell, even though when I got home I was in tears. When I had my latest spell (which was just a few weeks ago), I decided not to put myself through that torture again. OK, it wasn’t good for my social life (I love being around people), but it was definitely good for my sanity.

Us blindies are very reliant on our hearing; we use it when we cook, and when we cross roads. And this is just naming a few. Last year, when I got my third guide dog, Asta, I found myself struggling with robot crossings, which I never struggled with before. I passed it off as being the strain of coping with a new dog.
Anyway, after this last spell, I decided I’ve had enough. When I saw my ear specialist, I asked him if there were no other alternatives to the grommets, as I need stability in my hearing. As there are none, I then suggested hearing aids. He also put another grommet in, which made my hearing OK again, according to me.

But after going to the audiologist I discovered to my horror that what I thought was “good hearing” is actually pretty bad. Even with the grommet, I just hear enough to get by. So I decided to take a step on the road to acceptance, and get myself a hearing aid. (The other one will have to come next year; those things are pretty pricy!)

This brings us back full circle to the question: Why me? And the answer is still the same: If not me, then who should it happen to? Anyone who knows me, will know that music is right up there with some of my greatest loves. And, I don’t think I know of a blindy who wouldn’t get emotional about their trusty old flower pots caving in.

But you know what? Just as there is a life after blindness, there is a life after hearing loss, I believe it. And this time round, I have the added benefit of having someone to hold on to: Jesus my Rock. I also have some good friends.

So, tomorrow I get my hearing aid, and it’s probably going to overwhelm me at first, but I’m also a little excited to see how much I haven’t been hearing.

Without being flippant, my dad always has this little joke: “You’ve got AIDS: seeing aids.” Well, now I’ve got a double dose. 🙂
Thank you for indulging me and letting me get this off my chest. Welcome to my new journey, and you’ll probably find I’ll be laughing about this too.
P.S.: I started writing this after 1 AM, and it took me two hours! My hands are frozen to almost non-existance. Let me defrost them and try and see if I can get a little more sleep before the morning comet.

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