I try to not let being deaf affect my daily life. The sun will come up and go down, the wind will move tree branches, and traffic will suck regardless, and I should keep moving on, too.
But, about eight months ago, something changed my attitude about being deaf. My ear doctor delivered me a new hope in cochlear implant surgery.
I've been exploring my options since then, and finally went ahead with a surgical consult yesterday. The office manager who scheduled the appointment told me they'd get a jumpstart on the insurance paperwork and it should be smooth sailing from there. I might even have a new ear by the end of 2010.
I doubt many people could understand how excited I was.
All of that changed yesterday, though, when the a different ear doctor than I usually see greeted me in the exam room, did some rudimentary tests, and then brought the other ear surgeon in.
Suddenly, the surgeon was backpedaling. He told me that I wasn't nearly as good a candidate for the surgery as he initially estimated, and that if I did elect to have the surgery, he wouldn't do it unless I couldn't hold him liable for the consequences if it wasn't successful.
They wanted me to try the Baha implant demo, which is less invasive than a cochlear implant. I just about burst into tears from stress and confusion. I thought to myself, "Why would you string me along, tell me that there's hope, and then take all that away?"
It's still hard for me to write about this. Just thinking about it has made tears well up and a caused a tightness in my throat. More than that, I'm ashamed of myself. I did exactly what I shouldn't -- I pinned all of my hopes to this procedure. And now that it hasn't worked out like I had hoped, I am terribly disappointed.
I cried and cried yesterday. I couldn't eat. I could sleep despite being exhausted. And now, I have to just move on.
I wonder if I still can.