Friday, April 5, 2013


"Maaaa-maaa!  Grandma wants to know where you put her hearing egg!"  That's what one of mine called it during the toddler years.

My dear mother had severe hearing loss for many years.  It was not an old age thing but genetic.  She lost more hearing with the birth of each of her three children.  We grew up understanding her misunderstandings, often interpreting for her.

Coming home from church one Sunday I remember Dad commenting, "I need to go to the Quick Pick on the way home." Mom fluttered and sputtered, "Picnic?  Why a picnic?  We can't go on a picnic, Elbert!  I have a roast in the oven and besides we don't have any food with us!"  They both looked at each other like the other was crazy. (Quick Pick=picnic)                          
Bert, Mama and Daddy

Mama used a headset to amplify television.  She removed her hearing aid as Ricky started the movie, loudly explaining Jurassic Park to her.  She smiled and looked unusually eager.  Thirty minutes later her elation melted into a puzzled look as she loudly inquired, "Ricky!  When are we gonna see Dinah Shore?"  (dinosaur=Dinah Shore)

Recently on facebook my cousins reminisced about similar stories.  Waylan recounts a visit to our house.  Mama was his Aunt Kat:

Many years ago, Bob, Verna and clan along with mom and I stopped in to see your folks in Nashville. Aunt Kat fixed a huge dinner. My nephew Rob suddenly had to get up and leave the table to use the bathroom which prompted a story (doesn't potty humor frequently come up at your table too?) Bob said that Rob struggled at times with constipation so they told him to always eat plenty of collard greens to help him "go" like he should. So one time he was in the bathroom having his difficulties and he started calling out to his mom, "Help! Bring me the collard greens!" Everyone started laughing, except Aunt Kathryn who finally said, "I don't understand. What was he going to do with CONCRETE?"
I have lots of material! Some of it would not be suitable for a public blog, though!  You know, it's a journey we are both on going in to the "sunset of life" as Ronald Reagan once eloquently said.  Mom and I do lots of reminiscing, looking at old photographs, and sharing stories.  She loves to share her wisdom. This time of my life with her is precious to me.

My cousin, Debbie, a nurse, also recounts a funny hearing aid story:
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  • Debbie Tippett Hockaday

    I have a funny hearing aide story but it didn't happen with a family member. It was one of the first patients I ever had when I started my first job in the hospital.
    I entered a four bed men's ward when another resident complained about his room mate. I found Mr. Herman sitting on the side of his bed trying to make his big thick fingers adjust his little bitty hearing aide. The device was whistling like a loud dentist's drill but Mr. Herman didn't know it. I offered to help, but he couldn't hear me either. After an eternal 30 seconds or so of that piercing noise, Mr. Herman put the minute machine in his ear, looked up at me and shouted, "Can you hear me?"

Aunt Virginia is Waylan's mother.
My cousin shares his own mama's recent adventures on facebook. Waylan Goddin

Having breakfast at ihop with's a snippet of the conversation:
MOM: what does Anne do?
ME: She's a pastor's wife.
MOM: That's tacky for a lady to do.
ME: What? Why?
MOM: Taxi driver.  That's a tacky job for a lady.
ME: Where's your hearing aid ?
MOM: I don't need to urinate!
ME: Hearing aid!!
MOM: Hurricane? This time of year?
ME: (to waitress) CHECK, PLEASE!
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