309//365 / by Rebecca Tillett


(309//365) It's rare that a day goes by that I'm not reminded of my hearing loss. There are so many things said to me or around me that I miss. I constantly feel like I'm on the outside of inside jokes or simply a quiet observer to a world I don't completely understand. I've mastered the art of living in my own head, immersed in my thoughts because it gets tiring not hearing, or pretending to hear and laughing at someone's joke I didn't catch. But most days, I'm at peace with it. It's my reality, after all and it's hard to recall what it was like to have something that you haven't really had in so long. Honestly, I have trouble remembering the feeling of genuine hearing and awareness which I'm grateful for, because you can't miss what you don't remember having (or the feeling of having, anyway).

But there are some days where it's impossible not to get depressed or defeated or really just pissed at this lousy hand I was dealt. Today was one of those days; a new class with a foreign teacher speaking quickly and with a thick accent, who put a short movie on, that I'm sure was turned up loudly enough for all my classmates but certainly not for me. I need captions. Or batteries for my hearing aids but I had neither tonight (the latter simply absent-mindedness on my part).

Today, I genuinely felt the hearing loss I have no choice but to tolerate any other day. And the empathy I have for the deaf as a result, is unparalleled.

Cherish your senses, friends. It's incredible what you'll miss in this world once they're compromised.