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JUL:AUG 2013 E-Newsletter - Hearing Loss Association of Florida

JUL:AUG 2013 E-Newsletter - Hearing Loss Association of Florida

HEARING LOSS ASSOCIATION

HEARING LOSS ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA, FLORIDA STATE ASSOCIATION ISSUE NO. 40! JULY/AUGUST 2013 HLA-Florida – Call for Board Applications The Hearing Loss Association of Florida (HLA- FL) is seeking qualified individuals to serve on the HLA-FL Board of Trustees for three-year terms. Who is Eligible? All members of Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) who are Florida residents are eligible. HLA-FL is committed to assembling a board comprised of individuals with a diversity of skills, backgrounds, hearing loss, and ages. Hearing applicants with sensitivity to the needs of people with hearing loss will be considered. Ability to work with others is essential. Positive thinkers with the desire to improve the quality of life for hard of hearing Florida residents are encouraged to apply. HLA-FL members can nominate themselves for board membership or nominate another Florida HLAA member (with permission). What is Required? The board meets at least three times a year in locations that vary to provide equitable geographic access. Members are encouraged to attend all meetings. Costs of travel are the members’ responsibility. Members are asked to take active roles on standing and ad hoc committees. Meetings are presently held on Saturdays to accommodate employed members. Major committee work occurs between board meetings and is most often transacted by e-mail or chat room, and thus, Board members are required to have e-mail access. Reimbursements of previously approved expenses on behalf of HLA-FL are available to trustees upon request. How to Apply for the HLA-FL Board Application forms are available for download here: Application They should be returned to JoAnne DeVries, 1350 Main Street, #1107, Sarasota, FL 34236 or scanned to her at jdv.devries8@gmail.com The Hearing Loss Association of Florida Board of Trustees met on June 2. The resignation of Robert Astle, as president, was regretfully accepted. We wish him well. Jim Diaz, as vicepresident, stepped up and will serve as president until the Annual Meeting on October 12 in Tampa at which times elections will be held. Above from left, front row: Judy Martin;, Lynn Rousseau; Flo Innes; and Ed Ogiba. Second row, Brandi Kent, CART; Joe Nadeau; Tess Crowder; Richard Williams; Jim Diaz; Brad Ingrao; JoAnne DeVries; Don Shaffer. In photo at upper right, board members listen intently to Jack Levine of the 4Generations Institute, a motivational speaker. He was well-received and everyone gave him high marks for his inspirational talk. Will you Walk4Hearing? Walt Ivey of Jacksonville will Walk4Hearing ! Floridaʼs Voice for Hearing Loss • www.hla-fl.org • www.facebook.com/HLAAFlorida ! 10

HEARING LOSS ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA, FLORIDA STATE ASSOCIATION ISSUE NO. 40! JULY/AUGUST 2013 How do you feel about your hearing loss? Reprinted from March 2011, Hear Ye, Hear Ye One of the many ways that HLAA offers support is its message board. Topics include Middle Ear Implants; Tinnitus; Technology Tips; Families, Friends and You; Employment Barriers; and much, much more. Recently a reader asked this question and it became very popular as people poured out their hearts. Register and join us at the HLAA Message Board. You won’t be sorry. http://www.hear4life.org/ • • • I think about being fired from my job. I think about the losing battle to get my job back again. I think about times when bluffing has left me feeling isolated and embarrassed. I think about my frustration about my inability to interact socially. I think of the fear of answering the telephone or of getting into a conversation that I can’t understand or continue. I think about my loss of independence and reliance on others to hear and interpret for me. I think of losing my ability to hear, enjoy and understand music. The word that pops into my brain that describes all of this is “humiliation”. Losing my hearing has been a humiliating and humbling experience. Of course I know it’s not good to dwell on negative thoughts. And I know that there are many strategies for lessening the impact of hearing loss. But equally it’s not good to live in denial about having hearing loss. The considerable practical and social difficulties are a daily challenge. The associated feelings of loss and bereavement are worth describing and acknowledging before moving on with life. • • • I feel blessed that my cochlear implant and hearing aid have restored enough hearing for me to be active again. I am grateful for the members in my HLAA chapter. Their mentoring and support has made a huge difference. I am thankful our chapter meets in auditorium which has a hearing loop system. I appreciate the CART support we have at all meetings. I am beholden that captions on TV are almost universal I am pleased that captions are becoming more prevalent at movies and plays I am encouraged that more people with hearing loss are speaking out for our needs • • • I often think my hearing loss is like living in a foreign country and not speaking/understanding the language since so much of the speech I hear sounds like some other language. I wonder what it is like to have "normal" hearing. I would love to know what that is like. I try not to have my own little pity party, and most of the time I am just accepting that, in fact, I don't hear well. I am thankful that I was not born deaf and was able to learn to speak. I am thankful that I was able to work until about 10 years ago and do a good job and am accepting that I won't work at a job again. I am thankful that I can afford (sometimes) to try out new technologies and am able (usually) to figure them out. I am thankful that I can see and walk. I hate that I don't feel good enough (worthy) to join, go, or be a part of whatever interests me. So, I guess we can all be as happy as we make up our minds to be. • • • As a Deaf person, I am happier than I have been in a long time. I have friends that completely accept me and don't see me as "broken". I have a language that will carry me through however much more hearing I lose. I'm thankful that I found an audiologist that not only listens to me but also makes me laugh. (and didn't scoff when I said I wanted earmolds with glitter!) Sometimes I get frustrated when I have to use the phone and there's someone with a thick accent I can't understand. I get angry that 72% of Deaf people are un- or under-employed because that number includes a handful of friends that are brilliantly smart and hard working but can't get an interview because employers don't want to hire an interpreter. Then, after angry, I get nervous that I won't be able to find another job if something ever happens to Continued on next page ! Floridaʼs Voice for Hearing Loss • www.hla-fl.org • www.facebook.com/HLAAFlorida ! 11

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