"For me a brain tumor and its treatments are not a pause in the adventure of life, but instead a part of the adventure of life." Mary has survived big hair, a brain tumor, coming out, distressed bowel syndrome, hallucinations, radiation, and a car wreck. Here Mary takes us from public transportation horrors to the joys of sharing life with you. Though you probably won't want to have a brain tumor; you will wish that you could see the world through Mary's eyes. Sister Jen
May 2, 2017
Mary with collage and clutter
Saturday, December 29, 2012
Do you hear what I hear?
imagined that little lamb in the Christmas song didn’t really say anything to
the shepherd boy about hearing a song. Though Christmas is the season of
miracles, this seemed like pure fiction to me—improbable enough to suggest that
a Southerner probably wrote it.
however, I’ve changed my mind. I think the little lamb got a hearing aid like I
did and is amazed by all there is to hear like I am. The little lamb is
reminding the shepherd boy of the miracle of sound and song, a miracle that the
shepherd boy has come to take for granted.
See what you
the little lamb to the shepherd boy
“Do you hear what I hear?
Ringing thru the sky, shepherd boy:
Do you hear what I hear?
“A song, a song
High above the tree
With a voice as big as the sea,
With a voice as big as the sea.”
I knew that I
had lost some hearing in both ears after radiation two and a half years ago,
and that the loss in my right ear was more severe than the loss in my left ear.
I became accustomed to sitting myself on people’s right, and when someone to my
right spoke in my right ear, I often said, “What?” and turned my left ear
treated this as odd. Bless them.
I have a hearing aid in my right ear, and I’m overwhelmed by all that I hear.
My rain jacket’s zipper is extremely loud and incredibly close. The floorboards
in our house creak when I walk. Tapping on a computer keyboard sounds like the first giant drops of a Salvadoran spring rain
hitting a tin roof.
I walked through the university under an unusually blue sky, I kept thinking
that I heard a truck’s breaks behind me. I finally figured out that I was
hearing birds singing, and I relaxed and enjoyed their celebratory song. (They
were singing in birdese, “The sun’s out! The sun’s out!” And since my hearing
aid comes with a translator from birdese to English, I could understand them.)
just as there’s always an upside—even to brain tumors—there’s also a downside—even
to a hearing aid.
talking like Owen Meany: voices high and loud. Also, I keep thinking I’m
hearing people on the front porch, so I open the door, but the voices are a
house or two down the street. Perhaps worse, I can hear myself sing.
the birds, I’m singing a celebratory song.