Cochlear ImplantsPatient StoryHearing and Balance
November 19, 2019
Cochlear Implants: Will's Story - Boys Town National Research Hospital
If you guys have scheduling conflicts
with classes and depending on what time
they get in, let me know. Life is perfect.
I live and function every day to the very
fullest and every day I come to school
and I can talk to my peers, I can hear
what's going on around me, I can hear
what's going on in my lecture hall classes.
It's truly a miracle. Hello, my
name is Will Parker and I have bilateral cochlear implants.
I lost my hearing when
I was about 8 months old due to spinal
meningitis. I got my first cochlear implant
when I was around a year and a half old
and at that time I was the youngest
child in Nebraska to be implanted.
Growing up with it, I didn't think I was
any different and it was a really fun
experience getting to work with deaf
educators every day. I thought I was so
special when I got to go work with them
in their office and play with play-doh
and sound out my vowels and do extra
stuff like that.
One of the greatest things that I'm
involved in is called UPC Nebraska
that's the University Program Council.
It's all about communication and I'm
able to work with artists and performers
and agents and people within my
committee every day because of my cochlear implants.
Whenever I meet new people they don't know.
They're like, oh you have cochlear
implants, like what are those things on
your head, and I'm like, I'm completely
deaf and they're like no you're not, no no no
you're not completely deaf, and I'm like
no I really am. Look if I took them
off I wouldn't hear anything at all.
Working with the people at Boys Town has
been an absolute blessing. My earliest
memories are going into the childhood
room and playing with all the building
blocks while they tested out my cochlear
implants and doing speech
pathology there, going to mapping, going
through all that kind of stuff. It's
really just been a home for me. I
started with a big box in my shirt that
I wore every day and now I'm down to
these tiny things that I just wear over
my ears every day that are hardly even
noticeable. It's just crazy to think
how different my life could be if I
didn't have them.
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