Keep it Real Wednesday
October 7, 2020
Rosemary proudly describes herself as a “hearing aid dropout”. She tried them years ago and just couldn’t get used to them and her hearing has slowly deteriorated.
In recent years, her lack of hearing has become a barrier and has been an isolation factor (as much as we have tried for it not to be).
Daily interactions would go something like this. I would say something (she couldn’t hear me), I would say it again (she couldn’t hear me) and then I would shout it and Mom would jump like I just hurt her. It has truly been a huge barrier.
I know I am a soft speaker and it has been so very hard for me to talk at a volume where she could hear me. I know it sounds crazy but it’s hard to feel like you are YELLING all the time and maintain your happiness every day.
But then THIS happened.
At my Mom’s scheduled Palliative Care appointment last week, Sam, her Nurse Practioner, introduced Mom to a “Pocket talker” to see if it could help with her hearing. Sam gently placed headphones on Rosemary and sat back at a normal distance from her in the exam room. She gently asked Rosemary if she could hear her – Rosemary’s eyes enlarged and a smile enveloped her entire face and she said YES, I can hear you. I also starting talking to Rosemary at a normal level and the microphone picked up my voice.
Rosemary looked at me with tears in her eyes and said, “You’re not yelling at me”.
Sam used the pocket talker with Rosemary the remainder of her exam. Rosemary had an actual information exchange between them as I sat in bewilderment.
Surely, we must have one of these devises but how expensive would they be?
I grabbed my i-phone from my purse and jumped on Amazon and found one to be delivered to our door the very next day for $149.
The pocket talker arrived the next day and Rosemary has not stopped talking with it.
Rosemary wore the Pocket Talker at breakfast to share a dream with me and to talk about our day.
Rosemary wore the Pocket Talker when a friend stopped by to hear about her week with her friend visiting.
Rosemary wore the Pocket Talker when her Grandson visited so listen intently all about his week.
Rosemary even wore the Pocket Talker at church to be able to hear people greet her and interact with the pastor.
What a life changer.