We joke all the time that none of us can hear. We are always saying, “What? What did you say?”  So when I saw a flyer from Miracle Ear that was sent to my husband, Lou, for a free hearing exam I asked if he wanted it. Of course, he said he didn’t need it as he did not have a hearing problem, so I told him I was going to call and set up an appointment for myself. He told me I didn’t need one either. I could hear just fine; my problem was that I didn’t pay attention.

I called anyway. They told me to bring in my husband as my test included him. I got off the phone and let Lou know he needed to attend with me.

When we entered the office, the receptionist asked what brought us in. I told her that I was either going senile or losing my hearing because Lou would tell me that he told me something and I did not remember it. Either I was not hearing him when he spoke or I was going senile and was losing my short term memory. I was hoping it was my hearing. She gave me a pamphlet that tied senility to hearing loss. Oh, great! I had not considered it could be both!

The technician came out and took both of us back to his office. We talked for a few minutes about hearing loss and then I took the test. Since I had been to many of these tests over the years with Loren I knew what to expect. I sat in the booth and hit a button when I heard a beep.

The result was that my hearing was fine. He then asked Lou if he wanted to be tested. Lou hesitated a moment but then gave in and went into the booth. Lou’s results were not as good as mine. They told us Lou did have a significant hearing loss.

The technician picked up a sheet of paper and moved his chair so he was about 5 feet away from Lou. He explained that he was going to say a word and he wanted Lou to repeat it. He said “test,” Lou said “pest.” He said “red,” Lou said “fed.” Two more, Lou heard a different first letter than what the tech had said. Then he got the next six right. This was exactly what happened at home. I would say something and Lou would think I said something else. He was always telling me he could hear just fine, he just couldn’t always understand.

The tech then asked Lou to put on a hearing aid and he repeated the test with ten different words. Lou got all of these right. He then tried hard to sell us the hearing aids. We got out of there without buying them, but Lou did make an appointment to see an audiologist.

The audiologist confirmed the need for hearing aids so we did order them. Part of Lou’s reason for getting them was to hopefully get Loren to get a newer model and to wear hers. I thought, one at a time. I will work on Loren later. Her next exam is in July. Plenty of time for her to see the difference they will make for Lou.

The day Lou came home with his hearing aides he told me that when he left the doctor’s office and walked across the parking lot he could hear something crunching and he realized he was hearing his footsteps on the gravel. There are many new sounds or sounds he has just not heard for a long time that he is getting used to hearing. He says he now understands why Loren doesn’t wear her hearing aides. There are a lot of sounds that are just noise and who needs to hear all of that?

We are all getting used to his new hearing abilities. Now instead of having to repeat ourselves, he is telling us we are talking too loud. Interestingly, my hearing has seemed to improve or—as Lou would say—I am paying more attention.

Lou’s hearing aids also have bluetooth capabilities so he can be on his phone or iPad without earbuds and can even be in a different room than his device. This brings us back to saying something and Lou not hearing. Then repeating it louder and Lou responding, “Are you talking to me?”

Well, at least I seem to be hearing better!

Update on Loren: Results of biopsy are benign. We have an appointment with a breast surgeon, but due to the Coronavirus might end up rescheduling.

Talk to you next month. Until then, May you be blessed with warmth in your home, love in your heart, peace in your soul and joy in your life.

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