Thursday, February 28, 2008

Ear pain, gotta love them

Right. I've been meaning to call my audiologist about getting a different ear hook for my hearing aid. The ear hook was replaced a few months ago, but the hearing aid is still weighing down on my ear and making it ache right where the hook is. So bothersome. I've been wearing this hearing aid since a month before graduating high school (May 2004), so you'd think my ear would be used to it by now. But no, my ear hurts often enough. Makes me wonder how my ear would cope with a cochlear implant, since it'd be bigger than my hearing aid. Of course, I'm sure there are ways to wear the implant BTE so that it doesn't cause the ear to hurt.

Well, let's pull up and give my audiologist a call about that ear hook, shall we?

Friday, February 8, 2008

CI Conference Day 2

Today's conference went pretty well. My mom was late arriving, so she missed the part where Dr. Kelsall was talking a bit of the surgery. The pictures he had in his powerpoint were pretty neat though. Again she learned a bunch, and I had trouble keeping up. No interpreter, and the speakers were far enough away that it was difficult to lipread. Well, with Allison, she was behind the laptop at the podium so most of the time I couldn't even see her mouth! But that's ok. I did talk with Dr. Kelsall for a few minutes after his presentation. He encouraged me to fill out the application for the CNI CI Assistance program.

Allison spoke about the cochlear implants and of the mapping sessions, and of how the evaluation is done. But I've already been evaluated so I don't really need to worry about that much.

Then it was lunch time. Then during the afternoon, Allison and a speech pathologist talked of rehabilition for kids with cochlear implants. Again I couldn't follow, so I got bored and ended up playing with my SideKick 3 more than I paid attention. Oops. Although, I did send off some more emails. Emailed Judith at the CNI and asked her if I should have the cat scans and the meeting with Dr. Kelsall taken cared of before filling the application, and she said yes. The Gift of Hearing Foundation recommended that I fill out the CNI application, but I can't until I've met with Kelsall. So I emailed Gift of Hearing and shared with them what Judith told me.

Then after the conference was over (we finished earlier than planned), I went over to the DFS office real quick and asked about the elibility criteria for Medicaid. For sure I don't qualify, as I am over 19 and I'm not expecting a child. They even gave me a letter of proof so I can send this to Gift of Hearing.

Next, well, I'll just talk with my mom some more, and see if we can figure out when we can make another trip to Denver to meet with Dr. Kelsall. Once we have an idea, I'll email Johnnie at Rocky Mountain Ear Center for an appointment and for a doctor's order for the CAT Scan (they will fax or send the order to the facility), and we'll go from there.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

CI Conference Day 1

So, I got up shortly before 10:45 this morning. Funny, I get up before my vibrating alarm goes off. That's been happening every time I've set the alarm lately, get up before it goes off.

Anyway! I drive out to the Holiday Inn, and I was about half an hour early. So I hung around in the lobby, and bugged my mom on MSN messenger on my sidekick. The registration table was being set up while I hung around. Nancy caught sight of me and figured I was the Meghan she had been emailing with. We talked for a little bit, I got my name tagged, then waited near the front doors for my mom. She arrived, had to get her name tag made up (I got her registered for the conference, but I guess I registered her a bit late). This guy named C.J. was talking with one of the coordinators at the registration table. My mom asked me if I had recognized him. "No, am I supposed to?" "Well yeah, he was the very first one to test your hearing when you were little!" Mom got C.J.'s attention, and they got to talking. Once mom mentioned my name, he then remembered me. But I have no memories of him at all.

After talking with C.J. for a few minutes, we went into the room and sat down. Nancy started talking a little bit, then an employee from Rocky Mountain's Cochlear Corp. did her presentation on Cochlear's Freedom implants and the BAHA system. My mom was really interested, and I think she's learned some stuff she never knew before. I basically had already known a lot of the information she shared, just from the research I had done. I think! I had a hard enough time listening and making sense of what was being said. There were no interpreters and the microphone system just wasn't loud enough. Perhaps tomorrow I'll remember to bring my personal FM system and see if that makes a difference.

After the presentation, mom took off. Next coming up was the parent panel. During the break, I talked with Nancy a bit more, then I spoke with the Cochlear employee about finding funding resources for the cochlear implant. I told her of my situation and such, and yeah. Then I left to go to work.

Tomorrow Dr. Kelsall and Allison Biever from Rocky Mountain CI Center will be speaking. Hopefully there'll be some more information to learn from them tomorrow, including financial stuff. And perhaps my mom and I can speak with Dr. Kelsall during the break, as we didn't meet him when I was evaluated in September.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

CI Conference coming up

Cochlear implant conference is tomorrow and Friday, and Mom wants to go too. Great! It's free, and yeah so it's really aimed more for little kids, but it's still cochlear implant stuff. And Dr. Kelsall and audiologist Allison Biever and another audiologist from Rocky Mountain CI Center in Denver will be the speakers on Friday. Oh hey, perfect! I'm sure my mom still has questions about the whole cochlear implant thing. But perhaps just listening to the other parents speak about implanting their kids during the parent panel will help her out somewhat, as to answering some questions she might've had and that sort of thing. Who knows. I'm actually looking forward to this.