Journal Entry: Andrew Gerald Millas-10/23/2023

Journal Entry

10/23/2023 (Day #4317)

Personal obstacle…

My hearing loss and tinnitus is a personal obstacle that is an ongoing practice in proactivity and exercising my credo of “accept, adapt, and overcome”. I do what I can. I have hearing aids, they help somewhat with the hearing loss, and the tinnitus is at this point just what it is, a steady beeping/buzzing similar to a smoke detector alerting. Overcoming it is mostly about controlling what I can – it’s progressive hearing loss, eventually I could become completely deaf, so I’m prepping for that as much as I can. I try to stay up to date on medical advances in case something comes along that might help me regain my hearing. I’m grateful that staff and others have been understanding and accommodating about it when they can. In my programs and classes, I’ve been able to obtain seating that’s most beneficial to hearing the facilitator-instructor. In the ACE classes I teach, I let the students know in the first class of each session about my hearing difficulties so they are informed as to why I might ask them to repeat questions or comments, and I apologize to them for their being inconvenienced or frustrated and thank them for their understanding and consideration. The tinnitus is irreversible at this point, and tends to fluctuate in its severity or “inner volume”. It affects my balance sometimes so I’m mindful of situations that can exacerbate that. I’ve tried “remedies”, I haven’t found anything to remedy it yet. The best thing I can do to mitigate it is avoid situations and environments that cause it to escalate, basically high-noise level environments are metal-on-metal sounds. The higher the “pitch” of the sound, the more it’s a catalyst. I’m signed up and on a waiting list for a new “Living With Disabilities” class that I’m hoping to learn of other’s hearing loss experiences and what they do to overcome it or manage it.

Accept, adapt, and overcome.