Now Hear This
May 11, 2008, 6:35 am
Filed under: hearing disability, librarianship, Uncategorized | Tags: , , ,

It’s a crime that insurance companies don’t cover hearing aids, but having said that, I would like to say how delighted I am with my new Oticon Synchros. It looked like I might have to switch to a BTE model because my hearing loss is moderately severe, but we decided to shoot for the Synchros and I am hearing better than I ever have in my life. It is perfect timing, because the birdsongs are abounding and I have a free ticket to see Eddie Izzard at the Chicago Theater next Thursday. This would have been a waste of my time before I had my new doohickies, but now I am down with it.

A pair of Synchros goes for around $5600, which is out of reach for so many people that I don’t even want to think about it. Even fewer can afford a set of Epoqs, which are BTE only but are Bluetooth enabled so that sound from your phone or mp3 player can be directly routed into your aids. A pair of those puppies goes for $12,300, which will be nice for that small handful of people who can afford them. Their major downside is that they do not work with iPods, which is Apple’s fault and not that of Oticon.

I must confess, when my first pair of aids didn’t work out, I was afraid that I had reached a point of diminishing returns with aids and was doomed to a life of perpetual distortion. For months, I withdrew and hoped people wouldn’t talk to me in public because sometimes it was just too damn much work to hear them. I was chronically exhausted because I had to attend 100% all the time, but even then I sometimes missed more than I caught. Now I’m still adapting , because all of a sudden I can hear my spouse and daughter talking all the way from the kitchen. I’m waiting for the day when the sound of the dryer balls bubbling up from my heating vent from the basement becomes a nuisance, because right now it is a wonder pure and simple.

As anyone who has ever had hearing aids will tell you, the darker side of this dependence is that if your devices fail, then so do you. In my case failure was not an option, so I muddled through as best I can and somehow seem to have managed to finish grad school and continue to raise a bright, abnormally loquacious daughter who is convinced I don’t know nuffing. The struggle of the past few months has kept me from pursuing an internship to get my foot in the library door, but now that I’ve finished my classwork and I have two good ears, I am ready to take a deep breath and begin the chore of packaging myself. My life and career have hardly followed a conventional trajectory, but my odd set of experiences and training all seem to add up to “library.” Regardless of the setting, in some ways it’s like all of the best parts of working in social services without most of the worst parts, with books thrown in. What’s not to like?

2 Comments so far
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Yow. I had no idea they were that expensive!

Comment by Bubs

Hertz, donut?

Comment by denalynn2001

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