From The Storyteller
January 08, 2018, Grace
Chevy Chase’s Christmas Vacation is one of my favorite movies, and Aunt Bethany is one of my favorite characters. She is well-loved, hard of hearing and a little confused. My favorite scene is Christmas dinner. Bethany is asked to say grace. Her response “Grace? She’s been dead 30 years.” When she finally understands it’s the dinner blessing, she recites the Pledge of Allegiance – and the whole family joins in.
It’s easy for me to appreciate how everyone accepted her limited hearing with understanding smiles. I appreciate this because I’m sure my family and friends did this for me. My hearing started downhill several years ago. Ultimately, concentrating on a person’s lips, while they were speaking, began to matter. While others might see this as an improved listening skill, the truth – I was being stubborn. Having my hearing tested was out. Why? Only old people need hearing aids – and I was not old.
Eventually, the free hearing test booth at Sams became a challenge. Proving there was no hearing loss would prove I was not yet old. After the test it took me three months before I contacted my health insurance carrier about hearing aids, and another two months to order them.
Yes, aging is universal and at 70, being aware somethings don’t work like they had, wasn’t a problem. I just didn’t want to think of myself as an old person and, for me, hearing aids meant old. What changed? My attitude. One night I told Elaine, “I’m not dead.” The little voice in my head said, “You’re not done until I say you’re done.” I realized there was more to do, and I would need all the help I could get.
With hearing aids in place, the adventure continues.
Moral: A change in attitude, will change your life.