a year in review

So… Less than a week ago… I turned another year older, I know the age thing really shouldn’t bother me, and really it doesn’t. Age is just a number, and mine is still low… Its only 24. But every year around this time, it gets me thinking… How have I changed, how has my life changed? So here is my list of changes…

1. I moved. I am no longer in a 404 sqft studio apt, I am now in a larger, 660 sqft apt, that has the privacy of a bedroom, and the added advantage of a washer and dryer, not having to walk the clothes to a laundry facility, doing many loads at once… but having the ability, and the comfort of doing it in our own home, one load at a time.
2. I am growing my hair out… I have gone from a short haired crazy person, to a longer haired crazy person… this is something i have wanted to do for a while… but haven’t had the patience to do… (#7 has helped me with this in its own weird way… the odd haircut due to surgery). Some pictures for your viewing pleasure

Long haired me

short haired me

 

when my mom was here a few months ago

3. I am no longer reading lips 100% I now have sound to go along with it. The hearing aid still doesn’t work to help, but the CI does. This means I am less exhausted at the end of the day, and can concentrate on other things.
4. I celebrated 4 years with my love. December 7th was our 4 year anniversary, soon, amazingly, it will be 5 years. It feels like forever, I can hardly remember my life before her, well… my life after high school before her (granted it wasn’t long before I found her)… but honestly… I don’t want to… I have her, and she is the best present I could have. At the same time as feeling like we have always been each others, I’m amazed to realize almost 5 years have passed… I’m amazed at how lucky I am, that a woman as wonderful as her would have chosen me.
5. I have a new coworker. The man I had been working with for 2 years left my office in August, to go on to bigger and brighter things. This was a bitter sweet time for me, and still is. Although he was constantly late, and had me worried about what was happening time wise when I was off (if he was getting to the office on time), he knew his stuff. The new guy, is nice, kinda frustrating, but nice. He isn’t late, in fact, most days he gets to the office before I do… which is a nice feeling. But sometimes… sometimes he makes me want to take my ears off, close my eyes… sometimes I have to remember he is new to this… I can’t expect him to understand all the rules, all the goings on of the office in only a few months… although… I’m really hoping he learns the rest of it very soon.
6. I am only wearing one hearing aid, and wearing it more often. This time last year… I didn’t see the point of wearing hearing aids that didn’t help… so I wasn’t wearing them often… or really much at all. Now, because #7 is helping so much, and I’m gearing up for another, I’m wearing the hearing aid… Most of the time… not all, but most.
7. I have a cochlear implant. This has made a drastic change in my life, its made work easier, made communication with my family easier. I’m quite thankful for it. It has lead to less (and occasionally more) misunderstandings. I’m guessing what people say verbally less, so this means normally I am understanding better, normally I don’t have to guess what people are saying… but this also means that when someone is talking, I feel more confident in the words that are being said… which means when I mishear (which happens quite often), I am more confident in what is said… so this leads to some odd misunderstandings.
8. I started doing my art again… kinda – I am gearing up to start my bead work again… which I haven’t done in ages. it use to calm me, center me, distract me… just like poetry did (and might still if I tried writing poetry again… but I just… I have to feel it, and right now I don’t). I’ve also started kitting again (well… the kind of knitting I do). Its fun, it distracts, it makes me smile. I still can’t draw, I haven’t really gotten into painting… I do enjoy coloring… which I may need to do more of again.
9. I can understand words… and this… just freaks me out sometimes. I’m not having to lipread as much, I’m not having to worry about if someone is talking behind my back… I’m able to know. My last test showed a huge jump in understanding… but this was in total silence… and it is making thing easier even at home. the frustrating thing… I can understand fairly well in total silence… but as soon as the smallest amount of background noise is introduced, my comprehension goes to almost nothing… if there is more than just a little background noise, I have NO understanding… I can’t even always know if a person is talking
10.  i started school again. January of 2012 I started school again… I already have my BS in sociology… but I decided, to give myself a better chance at a fulfilling life, at supporting my love, supporting my children who have not been conceived yet… I’m going to be a computer programmer, and I am loving it!
Although my life has changed… some big, some little… and yet… so much is still the same.
1. I am madly in love with an amazing woman, she makes me smile, she makes me happy, when she touches me, I still get goose bumps, and I’m amazingly surprised, and overjoyed that I am lucky enough to have her beside me, not in front or behind me… but next to me, supporting me.
2. I am still working at the same job, still fixing computers. I still enjoy it… most of the time. I can’t say it is all the time… but most of the time yes. It still presents new challenges every few days… like right now with no matter what I do… I can’t get a systems BIOS password to go away…
3. ASL is still the way I understand best. I am so thankful I have interpreters for school, for church… because otherwise I wouldn’t be able to understand. there is just too much noise… but with ASL, I have access… true access… understanding, comprehension… the only thing that could really impede my understanding then would be someone who doesn’t really know ASL being my interpreter (although I do a fairly decent job still understanding as long as they know some, I get a general idea of the message/lecture) or someone walking in front of me, and standing there…
4. I still have the same car, even if don’t drive it often. I’m driving my work car mostly, but I have decided i actually need to drive it once and a while… or it gets hard to start.
5. I still live within an hour and a half of my sisters… but I don’t get to see them very often.
6. the phone still makes me nervous… understanding is hard… captions are helpful… interpreters are wonderful. Hearing people don’t realize how hard it is to understand if there is any sort of background noise… and I’m starting to wonder if background noise is just inherent to the phone.
7. I still enjoy computers, the consume my day, I fix them, they anger me, but they are still so fun! they are still wonderful…
8. Still living paycheck to paycheck… but the situation is getting a little better every day… or at least every month. I have a few cards paid off… and one that is very very close. I have a plan… it will take a while, a long while… but it will happen. my money situation will get better, and I will feel secure monetarily… although I know that will take some time to actually happen. Thanks to Dave Ramsey this actually feel obtainable now.
9. I still miss my mom all the time – even though I just saw her… i still miss her. She is coming back for two weeks in December, to help me after my surgery, but it doesn’t help i miss her all the time.
10. I still need “hearing” breaks daily… I need to take my hearing aid and my CI off sometimes. Hearing gets to be too much for me… and I need a break. I need to be able to in silence sometimes… to be in my un”amplified” state, to be able to just be me at times… not having to worry about listening, deciphering sound… to be… quiet.
so in many ways… yes my life has changed, and it has changed for the better… but really… the best parts of my life, they are still here… with me, and my hope, my goal… my birthday wish… those parts of me will never change.
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