It's Friday. I'm thankful. Mainly because it's Friday. But also because I've discovered something rather marvellous about the place I'm working at the moment....
Earlier in the week, the fire alarm went off. It was a planned test. I knew about it in advance. But the strangest thing happened.
You see, I can't hear things like fire alarms. Not even with my posh Phonak Nathos hearing aids in. Not even, if I stand right under the alarm. I hear nothing. But today, in the small office where I am working, where there's a radio playing that's loud enough for me to hear, I did notice that the fire alarm was going off.
How? Everything else got quieter. Namely the radio. While the alarm rang for 30 seconds (I'd been warned this was how long it would ring for) everything else sounded like it had been put on mute. Muffled. Like I'd turned off my hearing aids but left them in my ears.
OK, I reasoned, so things like the general hum of conversation would die down during the alarm as people struggled to hear over it, but the radio? The voice of the person sat right by me? That was more unexpected.
And I think it's great. You see, what I've started realising over the last few years of wearing hearing aids is that it's not about getting 'conventional' hearing back. It's about getting anything back.
It's so different to my ultra short-sightedness. I mean, if I left the optician with mediocre vision that sometimes meant I could see things I had never seen before, I'd march straight back in and demand they did something about it. But it's different with my ears.
I know that I will never have perfect hearing. That no matter what I do, I will never be able to make out conversation without lipreading, listen to the radio and catch more than the odd word and hear things like babies crying at a distance, phones ringing and indeed, fire alarms ringing.
But if my ears can give me a clue that this is happening. If I know that when the office sounds muted, then the fire alarm is going off, then that is most definitely better than nothing.
And that makes today a very thankful Friday.
Have a good one peeps.