For most of my good life, I have had excellent hearing. You will immediately notice that I indicated “most” of my life which has been considerable. I definitely am beyond The Villages average. In any case, a few years ago the Blonde in the house complained that I was not hearing or understanding her. I checked with my good buddies who being good buddies told me not to worry about it and congratulated me! Then I noticed that I was having trouble understanding the female television announcers. I, after some appropriate grumbling went to a doctor of audiology who told me that I had a serious hearing problem. He alleged that if I didn’t do something my ears would in effect eventually quit working and I would not be able to hear anything.
That did not sound like something one would want to happen so I went to have my ears fitted with high class hearing aids. I was dissatisfied with them and the doctor who fitted them indicated after the fourth time I was there that she could do nothing more. Rats, I said and found another fitter. This one works like mad, but I still have problems. Essentially, from not be able to understand my wife, I have graduated to the point of having a hard time understanding anyone – unless I can also lip read. The latter has become more difficult with the advent of The Mask era.
I should have known as when I played softball many of my fellow players wore hearing aids. I would often find the need to holler a warning to one of them, and they would never hear me. In fact, I commented to my second fitter that when I was young, I got glasses and my eyes got worse. I asked if the same thing would happen with hearing aids. He said that they would and by gosh he was correct.
Nevertheless, I keep trying! I have hearing aids that have batteries and hearing aids that are rechargeable. I sometimes mix them which The Blonde does not think is an especially good idea. She is most likely correct as there is no discernible difference, but I keep on hoping.
I do have an app on my cell phone which permits me to make changes depending on my environment. For example, if I am at a restaurant it should cut out background noise. That is a very good thing particularly when you consider some of the background music played at some restaurants. I can use the app to improve hearing television. However, I can usually hear the television without the app. If I forget to change it back to normal, I can hear the bad daily news two rooms away. That is not a good thing.
Now I am not making light of hearing difficulties. I now have more empathy for those who can’t hear at all. Life can be difficult enough without having to go through life missing one of your senses. Perhaps one day science will find a way to restore hearing loss. That would be a great achievement without a doubt and is something to pray about.
We hope that everybody had a great Thanksgiving. Which reminds me that my hearing is still acute in some cases. For example, at our Thanksgiving dinner I clearly heard The Blonde ask if anyone wanted a piece of her fabulous pumpkin pie. I did!
Villager Barry Evans writes about Life in The Villages for Villages-News.com.