Hello from London! I have an essay up on the wonderful site The Nervous Breakdown. I would love if it you read it and comment/share. It’s the first time I have really tried to put my hearing loss into words.
After decades of living in profound denial, I finally accepted that I had severe hearing loss. The audiologist put me in a box, stuck a piece of white paper over his mouth, and asked if I could hear what he was saying with the paper covering his lips. I couldn’t. I understood then that I was going deaf.
Again I thought: words overrated, talking unnecessary.
In a box, locked up like Darwin the dog.
When the doctor said severe hearing loss on top of tinnitus, it occurred to me that the eeeeeeeeeee sound I had made as a child was my way of mimicking what I heard in my head. I was trying to get it out. I was trying to drown it out. Anything to make it stop.
The phrase adapt or die makes sense. I’ve adapted to the constant ringing in my head. When it becomes too much to bear, I adapt by drinking wine. Or by sleeping.