A Hearing Loss & Late Deafened Blog

Deathness

In Accommodations for Deaf, Aging and hearing loss, Deafness, Hearing Loss, Relationships, Uncategorized on February 5, 2009 at 1:23 pm

My mom passed away last week at the age of 89.  And though she was blind for many years, at the age of 89 she could hear you walking into a room, hear a conversation two rooms away and tell u where something fell and find it.

Though we expect our parents to die, the reality of it all just blows u away after sitting shiva (the seven days of mourning in Judaism after the death of a parent).  I know this is going to sound crazy but after several days, I stopped trying to hear what people were saying.  I was actually glad to have a hearing problem.  Without a doubt, some people mean well but there are those who mean well too but just don’t stop talking. They love to hear themselves speak or they are just uncomfortable with the whole process that they can’t stop speaking.

The one thing that amazed me was meeting so many people who had deaf or hearing impaired children or parents.  Suddenly, I became Miss Popularity with one of my brothers in his showing off his little sister who had a hearing loss and works in the field of deafness.  Death has a funny way of bringing people together as does being part of any culture.  It’s truly a small world out there. Live it, love it and learn from it.

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  1. This is so short and sweet. There are times I am also glad I can’t hear well. Realizing that some people need to talk through their emotions, it’s nice not to have to absorb their grief while grieving ourselves. While it’s not always great to be deaf, we can find blessings and simple pleasures in silence that would surprise some people. I think sitting shiva is a wonderful tradition and should be incorporated into law. We all need time to reflect and process during times of great loss.
    Hugs, Kim

    • I don’t mean for people to believe that being deaf or having a hearing loss is a blessing. I wish I had better hearing as I wish u too had more hearing Kim. It’s the most alienating feeling in the world when we cannot hear the little things around us. Even the sounds of silence are taken for granted by most hearing people. The sounds of silence are very different than the sounds we miss out on in deafness and hearing loss. Hearing people fail to realize that some of us don’t even hear our own breathing. I held my mother in my arms, and kept one hand on her heart to know when it all ended. I just hope that she heard my words that last day in her unconscious state. I hope she heard the sound of my voice and knew that she was not alone.

  2. I know what you mean. What you describe about putting your hand on her heart because you could not hear her breathing–that is the kind of thing we DO miss– but you found a way to manage it. I am sure your mother knew she wasn’t alone at the end. I am very, very sure of that.

  3. It is said that hearing is the last sense to go before death. Take comfort that your mother heard your loving voice.

  4. I was miles away when my father died last year. I knew he was dying slowly for some time. I’d arrived at my parents’ home just the day before the funeral, and the place was already packed with relatives and friends. There was a reception after the service with several hundred people, then another crowd came after the interment to the house. Noisy as hell three times over.

    Grief is a process that is different to each person. For me I practically zoned out, not hearing much of anything except for the service and interment prayers. I’d learned over the years to just choose what I wanted to hear without wearing myself out, especially in crowds, restaurants, etc.

    Funnily enough, my mother who has had a mild hearing loss for the last ten years sighed after the last of the relatives left and said to me “All that listening has just exhausted me.” She finally understood what I’d known for years.

  5. So sorry to hear of your loss. It’s never easy to lose a parent, no matter what the circumstances. I lost my father 7 years ago. Feels like yesterday still… and I remember that no matter what people said, it really didn’t help any… there’s no “right” thing people can do or say, I guess… but, you know they mean well.

    It is a small world… and, you do have to look for the good. Live and learn, and try to help others do the same, is about all we can do.

    Take care.

  6. Only God knows when we will die, but it is our place to spend our days as if we would die tomorrow.. but we must try to making good relationships, achievements, and good feelings with others

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