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March 24, 2019: The Secret to Longevity

Maybe its not a secret. Or it ought not be. Those who are grateful are the ones who live the longest, barring the unforeseen, like being careless with a chainsaw. Yesterday, I was in a bit of a slump. I’m still trying to pull myself out of it. I am doing this by attempting to be grateful about now having to wear hearing aids.

It’s hard to be grateful about something like having to wear hearing aids. I can call them surround sound, but they are what they are – devices for the hard of hearing. And those who need them the most are (I hate these terms) “the elderly” or “senior citizens”; i.e., grey haired, doddering grandmothers and grandfathers who are just a stone’s throw from knocking on heaven’s door. My even having this talk about puts me in this category. A very

Alys giving water to Hrimmi on a BCHA packtrip
Alys giving water to Hrimmi on a BCHA packtrip

scary thought. The next thing you know, I am going to start having joint replacement therapy and talking about related woes.

Age wise, I could be classified as a senior. And the hearing aids are now another identifier. At least they’re not visible. They’re small devices that attach behind the ears. They have numerous microphones and are (for lack of better words) computerized. I did not get them, but you can get hearing aids that connect to your cellphone and enable you to hear the television better.

Hearing aids (I can’t believe I am writing about this) are also a real pain in the ass to deal with. They require one to change the batteries, clean the apparatus, which apparently routinely gets clogged with wax. And, of course, while they are a technological marvel, they are no substitute for the real thing.

And so, in light of all the above, it is difficult to be grateful. But I am working at it. First of all, I am lucky that we had the money on hand to purchase them. The good ones are very expensive, and I’m sure they’re out of many people’s price range.

I am also fortunate in that my hearing loss was not to the point in which I couldn’t hear anything – if this were so, I’d be deaf permanently. I can’t imagine that there are external hearing aids for those who are totally deaf – you must have to have something implanted in your ear canal. It would be like an insect lodging itself in your inner ear. Always, implants are more of a complication than not.

I am also relieved that this problem has been taken care of in an equitable way. I was working hard to hear people and at times pretending to be in on conversations in which I had no clue what was going on. This was becoming an issue for me in deciding where I might go in a given day. In addition to feeling isolated, I was beginning to feel stupid. I think (and I’ll know in a few days) the issue has been resolved.

In fact, I could now consider this a non-issue. The aids are not visible, so no one needs to know that I have them in place. Far better then, to have hearing aids and be a part of conversations, this as opposed to be unable to hear, and not be a part of conversations.

Next: 83. 3/25/19: Tyra and Reincarnation

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