Hello everyone!

I’m so lucky to have the support of my family and friends.  Thanks to all of you for sending nice messages and thoughts my way.  I appreciate it more than words can say!

Today, I had my implant activated for the first time!!!

What a BIZARRE day!!!  It’s like no other day in my life!

Today, the implant was set to a very low level so that the brain does not become overwhelmed with sounds.  Interestingly, sounds never heard before can come across as sensations as well as sounds.  I noticed that as the implant was programmed, I had a big combination of feelings and sounds.  Feelings such as a flooded magnetic feeling across my face, shivers on my arms, and calming sensations came through with the implant as my brain had never had the chance to be stimulated for these sounds – so they were not all yet perceived as sound.  Very strange indeed!  Nothing else in my life has been like that!

My auditory nerve, which is stimulated by the implant, and which then sends the signal to the brain is very functional!  There’s always a risk that function won’t be restored.  My audiologist and I were very pleased!

We worked on some sensations which twenty minutes later became sound.  This experience was a wonderfully bizarre one.  My audiologist has cochlear implants and so she was able to relate to the experience!!!

I will be at this level for a week and my brain will be making changes every minute essentially as it figures out how to perceive the new sensations.

I have a formal training session (called AVT – auditory verbal therapy) set up for Tuesday, the day before my next programming (called a MAP), and this will help train my brain in a formal way to recognize sounds.

I plan to go weekly for formal AVT training.

This is all bizarre and hard to write about.  My mother was at the session with me.

I am just filled with wonder, hope, and confusion 😉

I look forward to the future and improvements as they happen.  I have learned that this process cannot be rushed.  I am glad I am taking initiative to get training formally and also use training software and resources to help my brain along.  I’ve been using such software and it’s surprising how the brain works and changes the sensation.  I have already experienced positive changes!

I’m lucky I can focus on this aspect of my life for now as the beginning with an implant is a crucial time in terms of auditory development.

Hooray to my auditory nerve and brain! 😉

The retention of my acoustic (existing low frequency) hearing helps the entire process as well.  I don’t need to learn those sounds and can focus on the high frequencies!!!

Much love,