As I sit here in my quiet house I imagine the sounds of my future. The sounds that fill my present include music, laughter, children playing, ocean waves crashing, and Sophie's (our dog) paws slipping out from under her on the hardwood floors. In our current home I hear cars passing on the road outside my window, the wind blowing from the effects of our latest hurricane scare, and the sound of my own fingers typing on the keyboard.
I can't imagine not hearing these sounds, yet I know these won't always be the sounds in my life. Perhaps one day I will hear the cries of an infant that doesn't belong to me but holds a place in my heart where my own children do. Maybe I'll hear the cheering of those around me at my first grandchild's baseball game, or my adult daughters telling me all about their lives over the phone from a thousand miles away.
My present days in the midst of raising four children ranging from five to twelve years old are full of joy, stress, worry, and happiness. Yet I remind myself that these sounds are only temporary and will soon be replaced by new sounds I have yet to experience.
I don't want to wish away the noise of today, but I look forward to the noise of tomorrow. Of all the senses, I believe that seeing and hearing are the two we take for granted the most. We are the lucky ones who have always seen the light of a new dawn and heard the singing of the robin each morning. We don't know what it's like to wake up to darkness or silence.
We need to remember to take care of ourselves and protect our hearing and our vision. Today I want to remind you to do just that.
My grandpa has to wear hearing aids, and when I'm around him I tend to think more about what life would look like if I couldn't hear. To be honest, it scares me. A world of silence or darkness would be a much different world to live in. Thankfully he had modern technology to help him, but that's not always the case.
My parents (who will probably kill me for saying this) worry me. They don't seem to notice (though I often bring it up) that they are losing their hearing. My mom especially. She usually can't hear me unless I'm facing her, and they both listen to the television at such a loud range it gives me a headache. I will continue to tell them that they need to see a doctor (even though they pass their hearing screenings) because I don't want them to lose such a precious gift.
My mom has expressed a desire to get help, but she knows that hearing aids are expensive so she continues to put it off. After some research, I discovered that she is correct. Hearing aids can range anywhere from $1,500 to $5,000. Many health insurance plans don't cover hearing aids.
My mom doesn't believe her company will cover them, but she really needs to speak with the HR department to verify that (Mom.... go now, please). You should as well. It's important to know what your options are.
If my mom finds that hearing health is not covered she will still have the power to request a change. EPIC has created an advocacy flyer that anyone can share to start a conversation with their company's HR professional. You can download the flyer here.
If you or anyone you know is at risk for hearing loss or damage please pass this flyer on to them. No one should miss out on life's beautiful noise.
This post was written as part of a sponsored campaign with Sverve and their advertiser.