December passed like a breeze. After all the noise and festivities, everybody is back in his own busy world.
The days went so fast that I hardly realized that it has been almost a month since my little secret–a secret that nobody else knew except my immediate family.
I am partially losing my hearing.
A ride at an amusement park did it. It was a ride that had the whole circumference spinning as a big crank pushed the steel where the seats are from side to side. The wind pressure caused by the spinning and tossing caused my left ear to give out a loud pop. Since I didn’t feel any pain I didn’t make a big fuss of it.
When I woke up the next day my left ear was completely bereft of any hearing. Thinking that it was my occassional swimmer’s ear or impacted cerumen, I cleaned my ears a few times, but nothing came out of it. I could not hear anything, but what was worse was that I had a faint ringing inside my ears that was mildly annoying.
Taking decongestants and antibiotics have made little improvements in my ear. I was recommended to check with an ENT doctor to see what was wrong with me. An auditory test reading explained it: I had otitis media and moderate hearing loss. On the assumption that I had some blockage in my inner ear, I was instructed to take another set of antibiotics and return to after a week. I am now in this stage of taking the medications. Am I going to get better? I hope so. Will my hearing loss progress? Too early to say.
How to describe what I am feeling right now? I feel as though my left side is in a cave and the sounds are all but faint murmurs. When I occasionally blow my nose or let out a yawn, I feel a flap opening my left ear a little and so I can hear a little better albeit still muddled. After a while it goes back to its cave-like sensation and I am back to silence. I can hear my own breathing through my left ear.
Far from taking the news as a death sentence, I have embraced the possibility that my hearing would gradually be gone. I have always considered sacrifices as opportunities to reap heavenly merits, and so I didn’t mind at all if I will be carrying it longer. Don’t get me wrong: losing my hearing has me worried that I will be completely deaf in the long run,but hey, I still have one good ear!!! God was so good to spare me one good ear, so what I have now I am completely grateful for it. Rather than wasting this opportunity to reap spiritual merit, I have accepted it and offer it to the souls in Purgatory. I know that I will be repaid three-fold when my time comes.
Like St. John of the Cross who embraced the darkness, so do I also openly embrace the silence. In this silence, momentarily or not, I hope to discover the sweet voice of Jesus whispering to me, “I love you, my daughter, for you have shared in my sufferings and have done good.”