Some interesting things have been happening in hearing technology lately and I’ve been inspired to keep improving my coping methods so I can feel more connected to what’s around me.
I found out that starting this coming summer, some theaters in New York and a few other cities will be captioned on demand for every performance. (Note: Some are already doing it.) There’s a new phone app called GalaPro that will discreetly let us read the captions privately at any performance at participating theaters. I had the opportunity to see a demonstration and it’s just awesome. Also, many of the theaters will be looped so all we have to do is switch to telecoil and we’ll be connected. No extra devices needed.
I’ve also been enjoying television and music more since getting my Oticon hearing aids. The TV device that comes with them is the best I’ve ever had. I still don’t have and never will have speech understanding, but I actually realized some people had accents that I never knew before. Even without understanding the words, the sounds of voices add so much to reading the captions. I’m also picking up music in the car radio more than I have in a long time. That’s good news for DHH because now I usually sing the along with the same song that’s playing!
In the meantime, I had the opportunity to see Bette Midler in Hello Dolly right before her run ended. That wasn’t captioned, so I found the script for Hello Dolly online the night before and read it. It wasn’t the same as actually hearing it, of course, but when I did catch a few words here and there, I knew what they referred to so I was able to keep up. What we do to cope!! Homework! But I have to say it was worth it. Bette, David Hyde Pierce, and the rest of the cast were extraordinary and it was a magical experience to see them.
On another note, I’ve decided that the world is out of control and since there’s nothing I can do about it, I’m going to just try to make my own immediate world a little better. I’m on a quest to make every person I interact with smile at least once. If they laugh, even better. I just don’t want to live with the negativity that’s so prevalent these days. (If only my hearing aids had a bad news filter!) And I try to end every day by watching a comedy. Then I take my hearing aids out, disconnect from the world, and go to sleep – hopefully with a smile. I wish you many smiles today.