Olivia

  • Location: New South Wales
  • Hearing Loss Type: Profound bilateral sensorineural hearing loss
  • Hobbies: Dancing, Pilates, Theatre, Arts and Crafts, Going for coffee

My Hearing Journey

I was born with Single Sided Deafness in my right ear, which was discovered at the age of 4, and had normal hearing in my left ear. I attended mainstream schools and did not have any hearing devices throughout school life as my left ear compensated sufficiently for my right sided deafness. That all changed when I was 17, when I learned that my left ear now had a significant hearing loss. I was fitted with a hearing aid during this time, but my hearing was declining rapidly, and I became eligible for bilateral cochlear implantation at the age of 19. Going through such significant hearing loss at such a young and influential age, still studying, was extremely tough, all I wanted was to 'fit in'.

Life with My Implant

It has taken me time to accept my hearing loss, discover my 'deaf identity' and adjust to life with cochlear implants, but I wouldn't have it any other way. Cochlear Implants have allowed me to achieve my goals, and live life to its fullest.
Since receiving my implants, I have been able to go on to further study, and am a much more confident person. I can start conversations with new people, and can confidently order a coffee by myself at a café. It is small things to others that are massive things to me!

My Role as A Mentor

I want to be a listening ear and helping hand for those that are on a similar journey as I have travelled and share my story in the hopes that others can see that life with implants is pretty amazing!

My Top Tip

Ask questions! No matter how silly they may seem, get as much information as you can before making your decision. It was such a big, scary decision at the time, but looking back, it was the best thing I have ever done.