I am losing my hearing, slowly by surely. Last year, at my last check up, my general practitioner recommended I consult a hearing specialist because my right eardrum cartilage was showing strong signs of erosion – I had multiple nasty ear infections as a child, and she thinks this may be linked.
I don’t know why, but I’ve always brushed off health issues – especially the scary ones. Almost as if by ignoring them, they would go away. The same thing happened for my first mammogram. At the first check up, some dark spots appeared in the reading, and I got called in for a second screening. I almost lost it, ready to cancel the appointment. Why? Because the fear of facing something too scary for me to handle was bigger than the fear of not knowing. Almost like a cheated wife that refuses to see the obvious signs.
Anyway, back to my hearing issue. It’s been bothering me for a bit more than two years now. At home, I have my girls repeat three times a sentence – especially if there is ‘parasite’ noise [TV on, background music, other people talking at the same time], or if someone talks to me from another room. And I get the ‘rolling’ eyes, or the ‘never mind‘ by the third attempt. Outside of home, I kindly ask to repeat, and then sometimes, by the third time, I pretend I heard. But I didn’t. I give a stupid smile or make a polite little giggle, hoping that this was the reaction expected from me.
And then, the other day, on my way back from a fabric store, I stopped at the mall to pick up a sandwich at the food court. There was a lot of background parasite noise, and the lady at the counter repeated at least five times if I wanted a side salad or a side of chips. I just couldn’t hear her. Again and again. She got mad – because she had a strong accent – and she probably thought that I couldn’t understand her broken English. I felt the tears coming in the back of my eyes, and finally, I said it : “I’m sorry, I have hearing loss, could you please repeat one last time?” in a trembling voice. Everyone in the line gave me the stare, that long, ugly, pity stare. And just like that, I became the hearing-impaired lady in the line. I fought hard not to start crying.
Why do we react like that to health issues, or to admitting our flaws? Why do we always have to look and appear perfect? Who set those rules in the first place? Which idiot is responsible for this – besides me?
I have decided to take the matter into action, and schedule an appointment with a hearing loss specialist. It’s going to be hard for me to take the courage to do so, because it’s one step into admitting that I’m not as perfect as I’d like to be. It’s really ridiculous, because there is really nothing wrong with experiencing hearing loss. I just can’t figure out why I am reacting like this.
Do you react like me when facing scary news? Am I crazy? I’d love to hear [figure of speech] your thoughts. Peace and light. Xo, Si-