by Sr. Margaret Anne Meyer MMM U.S.A. 13.05.2023
For the last 20 years people have been telling me I should get my hearing tested. I thought I was hearing well so I agreed to go with an older Sister for a hearing test. Lo and behold, I was found to have some high frequency hearing loss, but not enough to require a hearing aid. I was greatly relieved. However, every few years people continued to ask me to get a hearing test and the same result would occur. Several members of the Community at that time wore hearing aids, and the television was loud, which suited me very well. Then these Sisters went into assisted living facilities and younger Sisters came who lowered the television. I could not hear very well unless I used a battery device headphone, and even then, I missed a lot of words. The hearing test this time showed I had reached the level where no more testing was of any use, and the time had come to get a hearing aid.
It took me time to deal with the shock. Had the time come when I would be considered an old lady? Well ,to my amazement, and thanks to a recent upgrading of the hearing aids, I have come to consider the betterment of my hearing as having ‘ear buds’. The aids are attached to my phone as to a Bluetooth device, and I can regulate the volume and direction on my phone. I can receive phone calls directly into my ears. If I had enough dexterity, I would not have to touch my phone at all. I could control the answering with small buttons on the earpiece. However, I am happy with holding my phone, placed automatically on speaker, so I can talk to myself like the young people walking along the street who appear to be talking to themselves. This also applies to listening to YouTube and podcasts while walking around. There is also a place on the phone Sound Apps which measures my steps and daily activity. There does not seem to be a limit to new possibilities discovered every day.
It was such a joy to take a walk and hear all the birds singing. The sound of the wind rustling through the leaves, children laughing in the school playground, was a touch of magic to my ears. As I am writing this I can not help thinking about the recent Gospel of the Good Shepherd. How Jesus leads His sheep with His voice. Is this a wake up call for me to get out of the couch-potato rhythm of the elderly and join the wonder of the young in listening to the promptings of the Spirit as to what God wants next of me. Holy Spirit, please send me a Bluetooth device into my heart that I can dance to your tune for me.