Three years ago, we interviewed our first PACS student, Stephanie, who was inspired to study deaf education after growing up wearing hearing aids herself. What has changed since we last checked in with Stephanie? Well, she graduated from the program and became a teacher of the deaf, got married, moved to North Carolina, and most recently, got a cochlear implant!
My CI Journey
I had been thinking about getting a cochlear implant even before I started graduate school—it took me 10 years to finally decide! It wasn’t until I spent the last few years working with children and adults with cochlear implants that I felt inspired, con dent, and ready to get one myself. I wish I had gotten one a long time ago because I had no idea how much I was missing.
Keeping Up With Kanso
I only qualified as a cochlear implant candidate for one ear, so I’m not bilateral yet, but would love to be one day! I decided to choose Cochlear because of their new sound processor for cochlear implants, the Kanso, an off-the-ear, all-in-one option. The Kanso is lightweight, works with all of the Cochlear True Wireless accessories, and allows me to still tuck my hair back behind my ear!
Surgery and Activation Day
This was my first time having surgery, so I was understandably nervous. I was happy that I was able to go home the same day as my surgery. At first I felt tired and a little bit dizzy, but soon I was walking around and feeling better. Activation day went surprisingly well. I didn’t know what to expect, but the first sound I heard was my husband’s soft laugh!
Are you thinking of getting a cochlear implant? Here are Stephanie’s Top 3 Tips:
➊ Talk to people with cochlear implants. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Most people love to share their CI stories!
➋ Auditory training is important to help you learn to hear with your new device. I recommend meeting with an auditory specialist. I also loved using the app i-Angel Sound because you can practice detecting, discriminating, and identifying sounds.
➌ Follow my journey on YouTube for more information and to connect: StephanieLopezCIJourney
Interested in learning more about Stephanie's graduate program in deaf education and audiology?