Growing up in the 50s in small town America, life was simple. My writing started younger than I can remember. Over the years, I lost all my hearing and by 50 was deaf. I now sport two successful cochlear implants and hear great - till the batteries die.
For many years, my writing was poetry. Then for six years, God inspired me with music. I recorded these at 43 and soon after could not hear well enough to sing, at least on key. No longer could I hear my voice.
At 49, in 1999, after 28 years of secretarial work, I became a deaf copy desk typist at the local newspaper in Columbus, Ohio, Suburban News Publications. It only took about six months before I was hooked on the newsroom activity and talked to the editor about being a stringer reporter. He was thrilled! I had a column in this same newspaper since 1998 and he knew I could write.
We worked through my deafness and with my editor's support and my love of people and writing, I succeeded. In 2002, I got a cochlear implant and my hearing and understanding went from zero to 95 percent!
We moved to Arizona and from 2003-2005, I was a community columnist for The Arizona Republic newspaper. Today, back in Ohio, I continue my column, Day by Day, in the SNP newspapers, write for Examiner.com, MoveOverMS.org, Hearing Health Magazine, and have a blog on Everyday Health, Living Fully with MS.
Oh yes, in 1987, I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and went on disability in 2004. Writing is now my main creative outlet.