[00:00:00] Hi friends. How are you? On this week’s episode of Hear and Now podcast I am so excited to have Nina on the show. We are going to talk about all things, hearing loss and survivor. And I cannot wait for you guys to hear this show, but don’t forget to subscribe and leave a rating, leave a review. And if you don’t already follow me on Instagram, all of those links will be down in the show notes below, but without further ado, let’s just jump into the episode.
Hi Nina. Thank you so much for being here. So, so excited. It’s been a really long time that we’ve known each other, but this is the first time we’ve actually like talked and been able to sit down and record. So why don’t you tell everybody a little bit about who you are, where you’re from, what you do, things you want the listeners to know.
Hi, I’m so excited to be here too. well I live in Southern California, so, we have. Wonderful weather here. And I’ve been able to just continue to do lots of outdoor activities and stuff like that. you know, in my free time I am an avid runner, [00:01:00] so I do a lot of running. I do a lot of working out and stuff like that.
I like to read, I don’t know. I like to binge watch certain shows on TV. Anyways. I do some volunteer work with the cochlear Americas, which has been a really rewarding, lately. It hasn’t been quite as busy. but you know, that’s a big part of my life being able to do, the volunteer work with cochlear Americas because I really like helping people figure out.
If they want to implant or not, or help them ease into, you know, making that decision and letting them know how it was for me when I first got the implant and stuff like that. So that’s just been a really big part of my life, as well as just advocating for the hearing loss community and educating people on.
Hearing loss and what it’s like for us, because I think that [00:02:00] there’s a lot of people that just don’t really understand. And, it’s just, just something really close to my heart, you know? Yeah, absolutely. And as a little backstory, we actually met because I was getting my first implant surgery. I think this was back in like 2016 had to have been, maybe it was even before that.
and my mom found you because you were on survivor, which we will talk about and a little bit. but you also have hearing loss. And as somebody who was older and getting implants, my mom was like, I need somebody to, who has this connection and could really talk about , losing their hearing after having it for so long.
so why don’t you talk a little bit about that? How old were you when you lost your hearing and how you felt? Just kind of, what was the process of that for you? Okay. So, I was 44 when I completely lost my hearing. It started, I started losing it. probably when I was. 39. And I really wasn’t even sure that it was, I didn’t actually know I was losing my [00:03:00] hearing.
It was just one of those things where my husband started mumbling and I’m like, what is going on? You’re mumbling. And he’s like, no, I’m not. I’m like, yes you are. Because I can understand all my girlfriends talking about, I can’t understand you. So what it was, I went to a, I got a hearing test done and I was losing my hearing and it was men.
It was those low tones. Right. They thought. That, I was having difficult difficulty understanding him cause he was a man. So I didn’t have a lot of men around, I guess. And I was. I didn’t realize that. So anyways, at 39 they told me I had some hearing loss. It wasn’t a lot in it. And they said I could benefit from a hearing aid.
I decided against it because I already worked. It’s really weird, but I mean, I wore contacts and I thought, you know, that’s just one more thing on my plate I have to do at night before I go to bed, wash my face, do my context, all this stuff. So I thought, no, I can hear it. Good enough for now. And then fast forward, about four years, it was like, okay, this is just getting to where I.
I’m having [00:04:00] difficulty now hearing everybody. And, I went to a different audiologist this time. We went to a doctor of audiology, which I highly recommend for people, because I think they just say, aren’t there to try to sell you hearing AIDS. Like you’re, you know, you’re hearing places. And so anyways, I went to this doctor and he said, we’ve tried.
Two or three different hearing AIDS, nothing was working and I’m like this isn’t working instead of clarifying and making the voices clear. All I heard was just loud mumbles. So that’s when I decided I could probably benefit from, cochlear implant. And the way I found out about the cochlear implant, I do have a blog dot com.
So I do talk about this in my blog. I was watching a soap opera, and one of the actresses on there, son got a cochlear implant. This was way back when it was fairly new. Right. And I don’t even think she. Insurance covered it at the time. And I thought, yeah, wow, he’s really lucky because he has his parent that [00:05:00] has money that can do this for him.
Anyway. So I knew about the cochlear implant and the doctor told me I would benefit from that. He was a little nervous. I might not qualify. So he said, and he would write letters for me if I need it. So anyways, I went to how’s your clinic in Los Angeles. And, I asked to be tested. So this is where advocating comes in.
Is really important for yourself. They told me that they didn’t think I would qualify because my hearing tests from this doctor didn’t show I would qualify. And I said, no, I think you’re wrong. I called my insurance and I said, I want to be tested for cochlear implants. Can you write up a referral? So they did.
I went back to the clinic and I said, okay, I want to be tested. And they were real hesitant and said, you’re not going to qualify, but okay, fine. We’ll do it. And maybe this’ll just be a marker for in six months. Well, I, went in, made my appointment, [00:06:00] went and got tested. They told me it’d take about two hours, told my husband go have lunch or something.
Luckily he did not listen to me because I went into the sound booth to be tested. And within five minutes they came back and I thought, for sure, Oh, okay. I didn’t qualify. You know? And they said, you qualify. So, you know, even though this is back when the qualifications were really stricter than they are now, they’ve kind of eased up on them a little bit.
even though. I could technically here, it was my word recognition. That was really that. I mean, I was only grasping maybe 5%. So you figure out of a hundred words. If you’re only picking up about five of them, you’re not going to hear what people are saying. The rest. It just all sounds mumbling. Those, maybe those five words you pick up.
You don’t even hear them. So I, I always tell people, you know, you need to sometimes advocate for yourself and don’t let someone tell you that no, you don’t qualify or no, we’re not going to test you [00:07:00] because we don’t think you qualify. Don’t let someone else make that decision for you. Just kind of push and, you know, do what you need to do.
But anyway, so I went ahead and I got my first implant. I think it’s been about 13 years now. and it was great. I didn’t get a second one. I waited, I think six or seven years before I got my second one, because I had residual hearing left and it was a security blanket for me because I could still, if someone talked loud enough without my processor on, I could still hear them.
And then I could still hear knocking on doors and stuff like that. So it was kind of a security blanket. Well, one day was in the shower and I couldn’t hear the water hit my head anymore. And I thought, I think it might be time to get the second implant. And at that point in my life is when I was, I was interviewing for survivors.
So I, I, wasn’t a for sure to get on the show, but I thought maybe I had to get the second implant. Cause if I did get on the show to him, you [00:08:00] know, to hearing too. Hearing ears are better than one. So I went ahead and got the second one and then I thought, why did I wait to get the second one? So when people talk to me and asked me about going bilateral, I always tell him, you know, it’s amazing how much better you hear being bilateral.
All of a sudden it just opens up a whole new world, you know? So, that’s when I got my second one. And so life’s been pretty good since then. Yeah, I remember, sure. I got my first implant and nothing 16. I was like, I’m never going through the surgery again. This was awful. I was so sick. I was like, you know, recovery was painful.
And then I got, I was like, why am I waiting any longer? Like, let’s do it. And so 18 months later, I was back in the hospital for my second surgery. And. It’s been life changing to have both. And it just feels like surround sound. And it’s just, it’s so cool to experience [00:09:00] things that you would have never heard if you didn’t go through with it.
And I think I remember the first time I heard the clock tick, it was the most annoying sound I’d ever heard in my life. And that hearing life was only a little bit short. I was like, this is really, really painful. so we still have that clock. It’s still in my room. but it’s, it’s really annoying styles.
So how did you find community because you were going through this kind of at a later point in life, when a lot of these people who aren’t getting implants were usually babies are younger kids. Who did you kind of surround yourself with to find that community feeling.
you know, I have to, and not a whole lot has changed in my life. most of the people who are around me are the same people who have been around me the whole time. I do find it difficult when I make meet new people because I am older. and I lost my hearing when I was older. So my speeches. [00:10:00] Pretty clear and, and people don’t really understand that.
I don’t always hear them, especially when there’s a crowd of people that makes it really difficult. And I think sometimes, when I meet new people, it’s intimidating for them because they don’t know how to react to me or how to be around me or what they need to do. To kind of help me. I call myself kind of a high maintenance friend now because I now requires some people to repeat.
And I mean, there’s some people in my life it’s pretty amazing that don’t want to repeat hate themselves all the time. So they just make sure they get it right. The first time is not one of them. I tell them all the time, you know? Well, so, and so. Talks nice and clear and slow to me. So she doesn’t have to repeat, but obviously you like repeating yourself all the time.
He doesn’t seem to mind, but you know, it’s kind of crazy. So the friends that I’ve made since losing my [00:11:00] hearing are really special to me because, cause they didn’t know me before they had to get to know me now and they stuck by me and they understand, Kind of the special things that I need so that I can hear them better, whether it’s on the phone or just in person, or we go out for lunch or anything like that.
So, you know, it’s still, it still can be difficult, especially when I in the, in a crowd, you know, and I do use some of my special things that I get with my implant, like the mini microphone. and now do you have the . I do. Yeah. Okay. So you know what the forward focus is? Yes. Okay. So I had, I had like the.
I don’t even, was it the freedom processor, maybe five for just a few months. And then I had the MSX and now I’d be on seven. So I’m still, and I’ve had the M seven now for, I guess, over a year, but I’m still [00:12:00] trying to remember. To use firewood for focus, but it’s like the greatest thing, isn’t it crowded?
Yeah. I honestly, I never remembered to use the either, but every now and then I press it. I’m like, Ooh, this is really nice. Like, that’s really great. I should use this. You should do it sometime when there’s a lot of noise behind you, because it is the weirdest thing. The forward focus, you hear everything in front, right.
And you turn around and you’re like, Whoa, there’s stuff behind me. And then, you know, the mini mic, if it’s really gets bad, I might turn the mini mic on and I just hand it in and my friends actually have fun with it. They, you know, they’ll go ahead. Can you hear me now? And talk to them? It does really come in handy.
So the nice thing about the whole Claire I’m planning, especially with hopefully or Americas is they give you a lot of tools to help you when you’re, you know, out and about. So, but anyways, back to your question, I just. Aye. I just, I don’t know. I just, I have some really cool people in my life. [00:13:00] Yeah.
Yeah. That’s amazing. it’s like, once you find those good people, you’re like, you just want to stick with them for so long. and I met so many amazing people and I’m sure you have two online and not just in person. and finding those communities of people, who are kind of going through the same thing that we are and are struggling to find community.
which is why Facebook groups and things like that have been so transformative for a lot of people. and from all over the world, like you just, you meet people from all different walks of life and that’s just been the coolest thing. and so I have to know, how did you decide between a cochlear, advanced, Bionics?
What was available to you when you were making the decision? I have two choices. I’m with my. A clinic I went to was cochlear Americas and advanced Bionics. my husband’s an engineer, so he looked at it from an engineer’s viewpoint. Whereas I kind of looked at it as what feels comfortable on my ear. And I liked the way Copely or felt on my ear.
And my [00:14:00] husband was like, why blades are picking them? Because from an engineer’s point of view, I would have told you, you need to go with Coke layers. So, I mean, it was, it was kind of. He kind of really helped me with that because I, I’m not an engineer. I am more of a creative thinker. He’s more of a logical thinker, but I’m glad I did.
I just think, I think they’re a great company and I’ve gotten to know some of the people that work there. you know, my engagement manager actually just, moved to Colorado and took on a different job with hopefully or so she’s not engagement manager anymore. I learned a lot from her. And it was really nice as well.
Volunteer. I went on different meetings with her when people wanted to talk to somebody that had lots of their hearing and got a cochlear implant that maybe we were the same age, we kind of had the same story so that they could ask me questions and stuff like that. So, that was really nice. but yeah, that’s kinda how I.
[00:15:00] Cochlear. Yeah. Yeah. I always kind of was struggling with the decision and I hadn’t met Al as another option there, but none of them seemed as pretty and aesthetically pleasing as cochlear did. and plus all of the technology compatibility and all of those things that they had, it just seemed so fun.
And as a younger kid, I was like, I want all of this like cool spy equipment and it just looked really fun. and now like I’m so grateful for the Adam seven, because it’s been life too changing to distract from Bluetooth to your yes. And nobody has to know. And that’s been amazing even though people see me walking through the stores, just kind of talking out to the air and like, What are you doing?
Like, it’s just the funniest thing. but, I’ve also been super grateful for cochlear and every time I go to my audiologist, so it has a little pamphlet with your face there. It’s always the coolest thing to see. so I love that. And so kind of going off of that, how has it been navigating the pandemic with [00:16:00] hearing loss?
Because I know for me, it’s been a struggle. It is a struggle. one thing. I have learned is not to take things personal because sometimes it’s really easy to be out and about and take things personal because not everybody understands hearing loss. Oh, they don’t understand that you read lips. and I am not a great lip reader, but between the lips and what I hear, I can pick up what people are saying, you know?
So it’s been a struggle. I would say 90% of the time when I ask someone to pull their mass down, they need to talk to me just real quick. They will. then you have that 5% of the people that say they can’t. And then I just say, well, can you write it on a piece of paper? And of course they I’ve had some people get really mad at me when I asked them to do that.
And I’m like, well, either you’re going to have to do that, or we’re not going to be able to communicate. And they get really mad. I could be kind of addictive because, and they get mad. I mean, I can, the mascot, I can pretty [00:17:00] much pick up everything, but there’s sometimes those important words that you miss and you kind of need that one more to fill in the blank.
Well, they’ll start writing and then I can see what they’re going to say, because I’ve already picked up the rest of it. Like I said, this is the vindictive side of me. So they got mad at me because they have to write, I wait until they write the whole complete sentence out and then I answer them and then they have to write a whole other sentence up.
And I thought, you know, what, if you just could have been nice about it, maybe I wouldn’t make you do this, but, Oh, well, but anyways, it’s been, it is, it is a struggle, you know? Ah, I wish there were more clear mass out there that people could use. it’s but you know what, like I said, it’s, it is a struggle, but I think as a person who has hearing loss and uses a cochlear implant, I just learned to adapt and just not take things personal and, try to just.
Figure out on my own, what [00:18:00] I need to do. And I hate to be someone that has to rely on other people. So, you know, I just work really hard at trying to pay attention to what they’re saying or, you know, whatever. But again, like you said, probably, you know, 95% of the people are very accommodating. You know, you weren’t near in the store.
They have that plexiglass thing. It’s like, just pull it down for a second and tell me what you’re saying, you know, Most of the time, my husband’s with me, he just tells me, you know, he’ll pull his mast down and tell me, you know, So it is a struggle. Definitely. It is a struggle. I would say the same. one of the things I’ve noticed is I’ve become more tired after I’m out and about for the day, because it’s just like, you’re straining to hear what other people are saying to you, which has finished struggle for sure.
But working from home during school, from home, it’s kind of like the best of both worlds. You only have to go out when you choose, which is nice. But that’s also kind of a transition to my next question is what’s a, a reform you kind of hope will be [00:19:00] enacted for people with hearing loss regardless of the pandemic.
I can think of so many things at the top of my head, but I would love to hear what your thoughts are.
Okay. What I thought about this. what I would like to see, see happen is a better diversity training in regards to hearing loss. And I say that because when I go, like, say the bank, I had a big issue with the bank. you know, you tell someone when you’re out and about. And you’re at stores or, you know, doctor’s offices or whatever.
And you tell someone, I’m sorry. I read lips and you look down and I couldn’t tell what you were saying, and they either get angry or some people laugh because they think that when you say aye, I’m deaf, you’re joking because it is, you know, people use that as a joke. Oh, he’s so deaf. He can’t hear it.
It’s fine. I don’t have a problem with that. But. I wish that, the diversity training can [00:20:00] include more, hearing loss instructions so that when someone says, I’m sorry, I can’t hear you. I’m deaf. And you say it with a very serious tone that they understand you are serious. And you’re not just joking about being top because there’s been several times.
My husband’s been with me and. And he’s like, no, no, she’s really serious. And then I show all my, my, sound processor. And then it’s like, instead of being a one minute transaction with them, the cashier it’s turned into a 10 minute discussion, which all these people behind me are all mad because I’m like talking too long.
But anyways, I think that there was butter, diversity training. And I actually talked to the, my bank about this. And, and people understand more about the deaf community or hearing loss community and how we do struggle. And we have to pay attention to what people are saying to us. If they understood a little bit better.
That it could help everybody, you know, not only [00:21:00] the person that’s struggling to hear, but also the person that you’re interacting with. So there’s not a lot of back and forth going on. you know, I had, I went to the post office, it was a satellite post office. And the lady kept looking down and I can tell her I’m serious.
I really do need to read your lips. And she got really angry with me about that. And it was her and her husband and her husband came out and told me I was never allowed to come back in there again, because I got angry with her for getting angry with me. And I was like, you know what? Forget it. This place is like, it was terrible.
Anyways. So it’s not always a fun situation. And I, I w I think diverse, better diversity training in the hearing loss sector would be, an advantage, like I said, not just to the hearing loss community, but also to the, you know, everyone else. That’s got an. Interact with us. Oh yeah, [00:22:00] absolutely. And that is such a good point.
And you know, that’s definitely would have been applicable to all of this during the pandemic for sure. but I think just when you go out, you’re just in a world that’s made for hearing, not a world made for hearing loss. And so just the general compassion of people, it’s just, that’s something that everybody needs to advocate for, regardless of what disability you have.
And just being super understanding and patience for people it’s just so necessary right now. but just finding those little things that you can do and going out of your way, especially for businesses and for people just go out of your way to try and be accommodating. you know, if it is repeating something two or three times if necessary, don’t get frustrated because then it makes us feel bad.
And just doing those little things for us that will really make a difference because who knows, we’re going to talk about it on a podcast or a blog. Here’s something. And we’re going to make sure that everybody knows, knows about that. so that’s been, that’s been super important for me. [00:23:00] so all grade points and I love that.
so before we talk about survivor, which. Super excited to, discuss, do you have any tips for people who are newly diagnosed with hearing loss or somebody who has been diagnosed and is struggling? What would you give advice to them? Oh gosh. I would say to just. You know, advocate for yourself, just keep pushing forward.
don’t feel like it’s the end of the world, because there are answers for you out there. if you need, you know, sign up for these Facebook pages, our community meetings with the hearing loss community, I definitely would. I mean, I just would tell people don’t give up because there is always some answer out there for you, whether it’s, you know, hearing AIDS, stronger hearing AIDS, cochlear implants, and find out the difference between all of the different technology.
you know, it just, I mean, just don’t give up [00:24:00] just always. Plug forward. I mean, my big motto, you know, it was follow your dreams, you know, don’t ever feel like that you can’t and advocate for yourself and don’t get discouraged. you’ll find that a lot of people will be frustrated with you and may not want to do the things you need.
In order to make your life better. So at that point, I think you just have to find it within yourself to do it right. You need to do to have a happy life and don’t re re you know, rely on everyone around you to do that. And I think that’s what I’ve done. You know, I, when people get frustrated with me, it’s been so long now that I’ve had hearing loss that I just don’t even pay attention to them anymore.
You know, sometimes when you ignore somebody, they hate that even more. It’s almost like sometimes when they say. you ask somebody to repeat and they just say, nevermind. I say, Oh, it must not have been important. And later on, you know, this might be a family member or something, and they might say, why told [00:25:00] you?
And I’m like, Oh, it was probably one of those times you told me when you said, nevermind, I didn’t hear you. So, Oh, well, you know, I mean, it’s kind of just give it back to them. So they kind of see what it’s like. I mean, I know it sounds really bad, but sometimes. That’s what makes me happy. And so that’s what I do.
but I do, I just have this thing about not letting stuff, someone to get me, you know? So, you know, in the beginning, when you first have hearing loss, it’s really easy to kind of feel sorry for yourself and that’s okay too, because you know, it is a, it is a loss, it’s a big loss and, it is, and that’s perfect.
Perfectly fine. But then once you. Understand what’s going on and you accept it at that point. , you just need to. Go forward and do what you need to do, you know, want to be happy in your life.
You know, whether it’s going to implant or whatever decision you decide for [00:26:00] yourself, you just need to make sure that you make yourself happy and you’re not doing things to make others happy. With your hearing loss, because otherwise you’ll never be happy with what you know yourself and what’s happened in your hearing loss and stuff.
So that’s kind of what I do did was I decided I don’t care what everyone else around me feels in regards to my hearing loss. I need to make sure I’m happy. And once I did that, and every, it seemed like everyone around me just accepted, okay, this is what, she’s how she is. And this is what we’re going to do.
And you just go on with your life at that point. No. Yeah, absolutely. And I love what you said about the acceptance, because I had always struggled with that, especially being diagnosed and kind of going through it. So yeah. where of my classmates are like, Oh, we have to make it accommodation for you.
And like, Having to struggle with that, but I was not, I wasn’t even at peace with it myself. And I was like, yeah, I guess I just gotta go with what they say and [00:27:00] say no closed captions. Like I guess I can’t cause it’s bothersome to them. so once I moved into high school and kind of started to stand, like the value that having hearing loss has like meaning amazing people and getting to do all these fun things and stuff.
That’s when everybody else around me also started to be like, yeah, okay. Like, it’s, maybe it’s not so bad. Like, Hey, if we go with her, we get free movie tickets. Like, it’s just, it’s just all of those like perks and stuff. And just starting to understand the value and the compassion that people need to have for you and value you as just, it’s been a life changer for me.
So I think that’s such great advice. And so now the part that I’ve been waiting to talk to you about is survivor. I can’t believe that you’re on survivor and I want you to talk about your experience, all the highs, all the lows, and going through it with hearing loss, all of those things.
what season number were you. On season 30 of survivor, which was titled worlds [00:28:00] apart. So we were separated through tribes. You had your white collar tribe, your blue color tribe. And then they called us the red collar tribe. Meaning we didn’t belong to why they’re blue.
And it was funny because pre-show, they do a lot of interviews with you and they really made me believe. Yeah. I mean, I didn’t know it was going to be white collar, blue collar, no collar. Okay. Thinking back made me believe I would be on a blue collar tribe, but I wasn’t. So when they announced it, when we were standing there, I was like, Oh, okay.
Whatever my frame of mine, I’ve always been in a white collar type of jobs setting where I’ve been a manager and you know, that sales and stuff like that. So that was the struggle for me being with people who didn’t have the same type of mindset that I had, which, you know, they’re always looking for that kind of controversy on that show anyways.
so it, it, it was, It was a crazy experience. And, you know, one of the reasons I even [00:29:00] did survivor, I did not apply for the show. I watched, I’ve watched it ever since season one and then very first episode, but I did not apply for the show, but they came and asked me, if I wanted to do the show.
So it was a long process and it took a couple of years before they finally put me on the show and I actually. I think I had a panic attack. I didn’t even realize it until later that’s what was happening. But I, I had only lost my hearing about seven years when I was on the show. So I was really nervous about going out there with all these people.
I did not know and not having my security blanket of my husband and my family being with me. So there was a point where I just said, I can’t do this. And they talked me into doing it anyways, but it was, it was, it was. Hard because it was a scary thing for me. And I decided I actually called a friend and said, you know, I just don’t even know if I can do this.
And she said, well, when that [00:30:00] season airs, are you going to be upset? You’re not there. And I said, yeah. And she goes, well, there’s your answer? So a part of it was wanting to get out there and, and. Advocating or showing people that even though no, I had hearing loss, I had a cochlear implant and I can hear, and I can do things just like a person with normal hearing can do.
So, while I was out there, I mean, there were several things that never even played on the season that, that they asked me a lot of questions about what I was doing with my sound processor and changing batteries and all that kind of stuff. And. They did, let me explain to my tribe, my licensed stuff, right.
In the very first episode. And, you know, I mean, that was a good and bad thing. I mean, it was good that I could tell them. I could hear it was bad because they don’t. Believe me that I could hear, not everybody on my tribal leave. So I had to tell them, because [00:31:00] at this point I had my hair in a ponytail and they could see I had something on my ears and I felt like I needed to say something.
What? I change it, maybe, maybe. I don’t know, but I mean, I was on the beach. Maybe five minutes after, you know, we went, we went through and told him about that when I had one of my tribe members come up to me and asked me if I could even do challenges. And I thought, well, what do you mean? Can I even do challenges?
And he’s like, well, you know, because you can’t hear. And I said, no, I can hear. And he said, well, what about when we do the challenges where they call out? And I said, well, then I’m the caller because I would make a great color. I take my processors thought I can’t hear my voice. I will be really loud. And the other two tribes are going to be really mad because I’m going to be talking over them.
he never did believe that throughout the eight days that I was out there, but, you know, that was just one of the things. It was a learning lesson. You know, it’s a learning lesson that [00:32:00] people truly don’t understand cochlear implants. And we may not hear as well because the clarity and all the background noise might cause us not to hear as well, but we can hear and we can function.
And we’re, you know, people just like. You know, you, anybody, you know, that is hearing. So it was a life changing experience that is so crazy. I can’t believe people were like, didn’t believe you. I mean, I’ve experienced that myself too, which just in that capacity, that’s just so heartbreaking. That and that’d be like, Oh, well, you didn’t break your arm, even though you’re wearing a cast.
Like, I dunno you want me to say, so I guess, how did you deal with having, you know, battery changes and keeping your processor on? Was that a struggle or was it something you kind of just adapted and just figured out along the way? Well, before I even did the show, and agreed to go on. I told them that I was gonna need accommodations and that I wouldn’t [00:33:00] do the show without certain accommodations.
And they said, 100%, whatever you need and whatever you want, we will provide it for you. So. Basically I use rechargeable batteries in my processors. And at that point I just said, I’m going to, use disposables. And I actually talked to my engagement manager at the time and said, Hey, listen, I think I might be going on this show survivor.
And, I just, you know, I wanted her to know that I might be on there and then I might be able to promote Copely or Americas, you know, a little bit, but anyway, so she was really excited for me and she made stride everything I needed to be on the show. I mean, Aqua plus and extra batteries. I know whatever I needed.
So, her and I kind of talked about it. Okay. These are, this is what it’s going to be like, kind of like camping. What would you take if you were camping? so they, I had batteries, accessible to me anytime. The Aquaplus of course, you know, you have to have a rechargeable [00:34:00] battery. So I see, we saw the doctor every three days, for challenges.
So I talked to the doctor and said, these are the things that I need. And he just made sure he brought me a rechargeable, fully charged rechargeable battery every three days. So I can have it in case I needed it. Now, if I needed it sooner, I just told the producer I needed it sooner and they would bring it out for me.
So they were very accommodating in regards to that. So, I mean, it really, I had no thought process in it at all. I had everything all planned out. I had a time, one nice advantage I had over some of the other girls is a little hair ties for your hair. You only got like five. So when they go through all your stuff, they for the game star.
So they’re like, Oh, you only get five of these. And I’m like, Oh no, I need more than that. And they’re like, why? And I said, well, because when I put my hair in a ponytail, I holds my processors on my head. And they’re like, well, how many do you need? And I said, I don’t know all of them that I brought. And they’re like, okay.
So they stuck all of them in my thing. So, you [00:35:00] know, when I got voted out, the two girls were not very nice to me, all my tribe. And I thought, Hmm, that’s too bad because I would have given you guys all my hair ties, but I guess you’re not getting any now. I mean, one girl had short hair. I don’t even know. I guess she did put it up sometimes, but.
You know, it was really good because they did accommodate me in regards to my implants in any way possible. You know, one thing thing, when I went on the mini mic had not come out yet, it didn’t come out until after I got back. So I’m sure I would have got my mini mic when I was out there also, because I would just have to tell him, look, I need this to hear better.
And. You know, it was funny. Cause my engagement manager and I were talking about it because that had already been released in Canada. It’s like, is there any way he can get this for me? Cause it would really be a plus and I could have like, you know, strategically placed it. You know what? I could hear people talking, but Oh, well that didn’t happen.
So, if [00:36:00] anyone goes on the show after that, it has hopefully our plants, I would say, make sure you take the mini buy because you never know when you might come in handy. That is so true. I use it to my advantage sometimes. And that’s where we’re going to leave it at that. but no, I feel like that is just such a cool experience to go through that.
And just to be able to show people that you can still do all of this stuff. Stuff without any, you know, where his limitations or anything. so what was the biggest life lesson that you took away from being on survivor with hearing loss? I would say, you know, again, it all goes to that. Don’t take things personal because I think sometimes when you take things personal from other people that don’t understand, it brings you down and it can, You know, it can cause you to go into a depression and that’s not always a good place to be.
So I think that, my big take away was [00:37:00] not. To take things personal, you know, because I could have very easily taken things personal. And I think if you watched my season, you’ll see me taking things for personal because I did. So, you know, when it’s happening to you at the moment, you don’t even realize it’s a life lesson until you get out of that situation and you, you know, look back on it.
I kept a journal. Oh, the whole pregame. So for six or seven days of my pregame, I had a journal. And then I was, I only lasted eight days when I came out of it. I have, two books, little journal books, all of my feelings and my thoughts and stuff like that. So I think that my big takeaway is just don’t.
You know, life is short and you got to enjoy it and just don’t take things personal. Just kind of look at the person who doesn’t understand as a person who just doesn’t understand there. They may, I get it. They may not get it. It depends on how close you are to that person. If they’re in your really close circle, a really good friend or a family member [00:38:00] that you see or talk to a lot.
Eventually they get it. I have a lot of people like that in my life and they understand, but those people who are more like acquaintances and they’re in your circle, but at the outer fringe there, maybe they’ll get it. Maybe they won’t, you know, and if they don’t, you know, it’s just what it is. And you just have to, you know, not take it so personal.
No. Yeah, absolutely. And I think the biggest life lesson I will take away from this is just acceptance and all stages of life. so I think this is super inspiring and I’m so happy that we could connect and record and be able to share your story with everybody. so the last thing I wanted to ask is where can people connect with you?
and social media and otherwise. well, I’m on Facebook and I think I’m the only Nina purse on, on Facebook. I’m on Instagram. And I think it might be the Nina purse cause there was another Nina per shot [00:39:00] and I want it to be gone Nina purse, and then I’m on Twitter and I think I’m just Nina perse on Twitter.
I don’t go on Twitter very often. I’ve been trying to get into it a little bit more. I have a blog that I have not written on probably in two years and I really need to, because I have all these ideas of things I want to write. and that’s Nina Persh doc. so anybody, anybody that’s wanting to read some of them yeah.
Story. At one point I wanted to write a book, but I’m just not a writer and I was having. I ever, if people editing my, my blog, for me, and I thought, gosh, if I have to do a book, it’s just going to be too much. So I don’t write a whole lot about my hearing loss on my blog, but I’m going to start doing that now because I’ve decided a book is just going to be too hard.
So there are some things on there, that are good for people with hearing loss, just to kind of read about, you know, things that I’ve gone through. and what I did in regards to my hearing loss, I try to be very [00:40:00] positive, even though I want people to understand that as positive and uplifting and inspiring, you can be.
You still are going to have your down days and that’s okay because it’s perfectly buying to have those down days and it’s perfectly fine to, to feel a little bad or a little depressed and stuff like that. That’s perfectly fine, but just don’t let that. Be your whole life. Just kind of try to learn from those instances so that you can turn it around because I think the most important thing in life is to be happy and follow your dreams.
And I tell people too, that, you know, you can have dreams and you can set goals and it’s okay if you never reach them. That’s okay. So what you do at that point is maybe reassess and find a new dream or figure out a way you can still achieve that. Dream, but even if you don’t, don’t let that get you down because it doesn’t mean you’re a failure.
A failure is when you don’t [00:41:00] try it. As long as you try, then you’re never a failure. You’re always. A successful person. I keep thinking the word. Yeah. You know what I’m saying? Yes. I do know that is so inspiring. I love that. and one of the, you know, models that I always say is failure. Doesn’t define you.
It refines you. and so just let it keep going and just. It’s okay to fall down as long as you get back up again. So I think that is so inspiring and I’m so happy that we were able to put out this inspiring message to people. so thank you. So, so, so much for coming on the show. I’m so happy for everybody to hear this episode.
and hopefully if you have any questions, feel free to send Nina that message. she’s always open to messages. And again, thank you guys so much for listening to this week’s episode of Hear and Now podcast. Don’t forget to subscribe and leave a rating and review on the show. Follow me on Instagram and find Nina and all of her socials and the link down below without further ado, I’m going to close out this episode.
Thank you guys for listening, and we will see you back next [00:42:00] time on Hear and Now podcast. Bye guys.