Ear Surgery

I’m taking the day off from school tomorrow to go for an “elective” surgery. That is to say, it isn’t necessary or life-threatening. I’m choosing to do it, for good reason, after waiting for years.

Every person has characteristics that define his or her childhood. One’s location, parents, and consumed media establishes the “brand” of his or her adolescent years. These factors determine whether the childhood was wonderful, miserable, or somewhere in between.

What defined my childhood, and somewhat defines me to this day, is my right perforated eardrum. It’s exactly what it sounds like: I have a hole in my eardrum caused by constant ear infections as a child. Throughout my entire life, as long as I can remember, I have had significant hearing loss in that ear. To add insult to injury, I’ve had to wear earplugs while bathing, every day, as long as I’ve been able to bathe myself.

I’m not saying it’s a bad thing, or even complaining. I’ve completely adapted to it and it’s just part of the daily routine, like going to the bathroom.

And the hearing loss? I’ve managed to deal with it throughout my almost-finished high school career. Over the last few days, I’ve told people about what I’m doing, and they were shocked to learn that I have hearing loss at all. I’ve worked very hard to conceal it.

I’ve literally waited my whole life for what is going to happen tomorrow. There is a good chance that I’ll be able to reclaim a slightly more “normal” lifestyle by getting a good deal of my hearing back.

I’m excited, hopeful, and terrified.

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