It begins:
Faith. Yes, I have a great faith in God. But, I have learned that God’s ways are very different to the ways of man. To the ways of Gaynor Young!
So, while I can hope and pray that something turns out a certain way, God might have a different plan in mind for me.
On the 5th May, Caroline Goss a good friend drove us from George to Cape Town. Mum hates driving in CT so that was why Caroline volunteered. How generous, our own personal taxi driver for the week!
I sat in the back of the car and read. And thought. On the 6th May the waiting came to an end. 6th May was CI day! Yes, I had prayed for acceptance of whatever happened in my operation. But I had prayed for acceptance with the knowledge that the operation would work! What happened if it didn’t? How does one accept the un-acceptable? I shuddered and returned to my book.
The 6th dawned as it inevitably had to. Mum, my sister, Liz, Caroline and I set off for Tygerberg Hospital. My audiologist, Jenny, had to do a hearing test of my left ear to see how much sound it was picking up. I didn’t actually ‘hear’ anything but I told Jen when I thought I ‘felt’ a sound. Then it was off to Dr Wagenfeld’s rooms. (Derek Wagenfeld but I chose to call him Dr Derek!)
I hadn’t seen him for six years and he had maintained the air of natural ease about him. We all trooped into his office and sat down. He picked up the report that Jenny had sent him, glanced at it and crumpled it into a ball and threw it over his shoulder. “Right! We know that you are definitely picking up nothing on your left hand side. Let me have a look at your scans.” He was then quiet for a long time as he went over the x-rays of my brain.
“Is it going to be difficult?” I said breaking the silence.
“Yes, yes it is. I had forgotten how much of your skull was crushed. But the Cochlear is still there so….we’ll give it a try.” He looked up at me and smiled.
At four o’clock they came to wheel me through to theatre. Mum gave me a long hug. I didn’t envy them waiting for my return. I had the easy part. I would be blissfully unconscious. They would spend two hours worrying.
In actual fact, it was three hours. The inside of my skull was a complete mish-mash of broken bones and Dr Derek had his work cut out for him. I came around in the surgical recovery room and lay there in a complete panic. They had put my Cochlear Implant on my right ear so I could hear but nothing made any sense to me. Where was I? Who were these people in green gowns? What were all these strange machines? They wheeled me down these long, unfamiliar corridors and into a room. Ah, there were people I knew. Mum, who looked as if she had been crying. Liz who gave me a gentle squeeze of the hand. And a weeping Caroline.
“Caroline, why are you here?” were my first words. Liz gently reminded me that Caroline had driven us down to Cape Town.
“Cape Town,” I said in a detective manner, slowly putting it all together. “We had supper together…yes,” I said as the three of them nodded their heads encouragingly. “And today..oh, I’m in hospital!” I finally deduced. That was when Mum couldn’t wait any longer.
“And the operation went well. It went so, so well. Dr Derek and Jenny said that they both believe you’ll get your hearing back. They’re not sure what percentage but you will hear again in that ear!”
Three weeping individuals left the hospital that night.
Dr Derek has given me so much. He gave me back the world of sound. As he said to me: “Don’t I do the most wonderful job in the world? I work at making people happy. Who would not enjoy doing that?”
And so now it is a case of waiting for three weeks. In a strange way I am in no hurry for them to be over. Once they are over, then reality hits.
I am nervous for that. I must have faith!