Today I was back in Glasgow and saw a friend from my lip reading class. She bought me lunch and told me about how her friends and family are getting on. She is like a Gran to me. All of my lip reading friends feel like my older relatives. I was so nervous when I turned up at my first lip reading class almost three years ago. I was scared that I wouldn’t fit in there, that the rest of the class might not like me because I was so much younger and had no hearing loss.
They welcomed and accepted me. I told her this, thanking her for accepting me and making me feel so at home there. I wanted her to know how important her and my other lip reading friends are to me.
She just looked at me and said, “Jenny, why would we not accept you?”
After school, lip reading classes didn’t just help with Aural Rehabilitation. The friends I made there helped to restore my faith in people.
Today I had a chance to work on The Gibberish Dictionary eBook project again.
Reading my diary from two years ago (when I was still going through Johansen IAS Therapy for serious Auditory Processing Disorder) was an eye-opener to how amazing my life is now. I had almost forgotten how poor my sound processing was. I could barely cross roads safely because the deafening, distorted, misplaced traffic sounds I heard clashed with my synaesthesia. I couldn’t hear the words in songs- slurred mouth-noises with the odd understandable words in between were swamped by mushy instrumental backgrounds. Because of this, all the music I love now was uninteresting to me. Some sounds were painful and overwhelming. I couldn’t cope for long in busy environments such as town centres, or even my local supermarket when it was busy. I couldn’t sing anything in pitch because I couldn’t hear my voice properly. My listening skills (and consequentially my social skills) were so poor I could barely hold a conversation. This makes me glad that I kept a record of the massive improvements to my hearing. Not just because the diary may be a useful case study for other people, but because I had been starting to take my amazing new life for granted.