One Week

One week from today I will be having my Cochlear Implant put in. In fact, the current time as of writing this is 9:05, which means right now I will probably be done with my surgery and resting quietly while my parents are pacing back and forth out in the waiting room, biting what little nails they have left, while pulling at bloody and bruised cuticles.

The only real big danger and tricky part of the surgery is that the surgeon needs to drill right next to a major facial nerve. One little tick and one side of my face would be paralyzed. Which would suck, I'm not going to kid myself here, but I think its a good trade off for the ability to communicate with my family and all the rest of you.

Anyway I wanted to post some things about the implant so that everyone reading this can get some ideas about what it looks like, what it does, etc. etc.
Here is an article you can read, there are many other articles that are probably better but as you hunt around the technology changes so rapidly a lot of the info is out of date or biased in some way.

This is an article going over the basics of the surgery and what will be happening in the weeks to follow

and as always a nice little wiki site

Here is a video with info on the implant and how it works

Just so you all know, you have to realize that a cochlear implant is a controversial thing to the deaf community. In short, a lot of articles written are from that biased standpoint and the whole issue is very complicated. Just know that the implants are not a cure, but a tool. I will always be deaf, and when the implant is off I will be deaf. When I am swimming, I will be deaf. Even with it on I will be deaf, but I will be able to hear sound.

The implants that are being implanted today are much more complex than those being implanted only a few years ago (2005). So if you read an article, read a current article, and make sure the author isn't biased against the idea of the implant. People are having great success with the implant, especially when it's implanted this early. It will be extremely hard work, but hopefully with a lot of dedication I will have a lot of success too. Only time will tell.

Ok so here is the actual implant I will be getting. It is made by a company called Cochlear, and the implant itself is called the Nucleus Freedom.
Here is the website for Cochlear

Here is a technical drawing of how its implanted and how the implant will look outside of my head. Notice the actual implant is kind of drilled into my actual skull. I am totally going to be a cyborg!!!! Ill be back!!!!

This is a kid after the surgery, which is probably what I will look like... maybe not that happy.. this kid is clearly still on drugs!

Here is a picture of a deaf cat with an implant... which apparently works for deaf animals as well. Crazy huh?

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