I had the sad experience of having my beloved ipod stolen from me yesterday and it really made me realize how vital music plays in my life.
Its a tad ironic that it does since I have been born with a hearing loss, and music wouldn’t be naturally considered a part of my life, especially with my right ear is profoundly deaf. To help you understand what that means, there are four different levels of hearing loss; Mild, Moderate, Severe, and Profound, in that order. People who usually have moderate to slightly profound have found assistance through hearing aids to help them be able to get something out of the sounds around them. Once you’re in the deep profound range, hearing aids usually don’t have the power to help you. I do have several friends who are in this range who have opted to use the controversial Cochlear Implants to give them some kind of hearing to function in a very noisy world. As for me, I am able to use hearing aids to pick up most of the sounds around me, though there are some ranges of sound my ears will never be able to pick up like any normal person would be able to, and it is worse in my right ear, as my husband can attest to when the battery in my left hearing aid goes out. That doesn’t stop me from listening to my music. I crank up my music on my ipod to the point where sometimes people around me can hear it a little bit, or I have my hearing aids on while I have music playing in my car or in my home. Right now, with my earphones on, I have the volume cranked all the way up to 100 off my computer to listen to music. I’m sure the normal hearing person wouldn’t have it cranked up that high with headphones on.
Growing up, my home was always filled with music. My parents sang in the church choir. I loved my mother’s voice and was jealous of my bother’s gift of music. It was hard being the only one who wasn’t musically gifted, all thanks to my hearing loss, but I did find a different way to channel my love for music a different way eventually. Signing songs gave me a way to truly enjoy the music I listened to, and I love a very wide range of music.
Pandora has been a favorite access site for me to dabble in the many different forms of music available to me, and currently I am sitting here listening to the “New Age” music. It calms me and invigorates my imagination. I would write my poems, which I have not done in a long time, or create short stories in my head inspired by some of my favorite literary settings or characters. My all time favorite is Middle-Earth, though I have visited Prince Edward Island, Narnia, England, and the Renaissance era, just to name a few. But when I’m not in the need of calming, I use music to motivate me. Techno or Rock moves me to exercise or clean around my home. For encouragement during a rough time in my life, I turn to my Worship music like Chris Tomlin or Michael W. Smith. When I’m driving, I find it hard not to turn my radio on to listen to the Christian Radio station. If I don’t have the kids in the car with me, I would listen to the Country music station. I’d have my cds playing, but my cd player is currently broken in my car. The reason for not having my kids in the car is because some Country songs are a little questionable for a young child, since they’re reputably known to be about broken relationships and sad situations. I don’t feel comfortable letting my five and three year old hear songs about such things. In this world we live in, I’d like them to keep their innocence for as long as they can.
Back to the subject of music…
Music plays a big part of who I am, and I am grateful for it. Sure, I am an ipod-less person at the moment, but I am not without my hearing aids, a huge collection of cds, a computer to play them on, and, last but not least, there is Pandora to entertain my ears and mind with.
Next month, with the Deaf Ministry group at my church, I will be signing two songs for our annual Spring Sign Concert. The first is a solo of Stand Up by Fireflight and, the second is Healing Rain by Michael W. Smith with a friend of mine. There are to be many other people signing songs during the concert, but for me, its a great way for me to share my love of music and God’s creation of it. He did make us musical creatures – Afterall, we’re the only creation that sings just for the pure expression of the deeper part of ourselves, either it be grief, anger, joy, or peace. Birds and other animals sing for communication, though it is very beautiful to listen to… But that altogether is a whole new subject to get into.
My mind is wandering with pictures of Paradise; green pastures, crystal clear waters, radiant flowers blowing gently falling off trees by a coaxing spring wind, and peace becoming a tangible thing…. Isn’t music a beautiful thing? I know Heaven has to have perpetual music, and I’m looking forward to it. As for now, I will enjoy my music on Earth and thank God for it everyday. I’ll consider it training for the day I enter His kingdom to “Sing of His Praise Forever”… Even with these different ears of mine.