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To B or Not To B; Where B is Bionic

Well. The serious research phase has finally begun. In looking at the cell tower implant (BAHA) and the CROS hearing aid options, I am stumbling across lots of other stories of folks who have trod this path before, as well as more in-depth looks at this whole SSHL, tinnitus, and vertigo shebang.

The good news: looks like my doc is right on the cutting edge of most of what's what, and correct on all the things they know, and about those areas where he has been forthright to me about what they just don't know. So that's all good. A convo with a friend recently made me question once again my lack of getting a second opinion, something I would normally consider harder.

As I've said in previous blogs, though, I rely heavily on the Husbandly One's spidey-senses on things like this; he's rarely wrong about people. He is typically very skeptical, so his thumbs-up of the doc carried some weight. Still, it's been very good to get as much affirmation as I have from medical studies, research papers, and anecdotal stories.

Building 15 "Under the Flesh"

On Wellington Street

The man's condition was brought to my attention through a neighbor of his. Entering his house was difficult, as he insisted that the blinds in all the room remain drawn and the lights off, so it took me time to adjust to the dark. I was not aware of what he wanted to speak to me about, but it soon became clear. The man wished to talk to me about an experience he had several months ago, an experience that left him with the belief that his body is slowly being replaced with bugs.

I asked him why I shouldn't open the blinds. He said that if I did the bugs inside would scurry away, taking his arms and legs with them. I...listened as he shared with me the tale of how he got to this point, and I am unsure how to react to it. I will leave interpretations up to the reader.

“I often go out late at night on walks. At least I used to. It helps me clear my focus. I have lived alone for most of my life, and the burden of that can be overwhelming. People don't really talk to me, and I struggle to make friends. I have assumed myself to be an introvert, but increasingly I believe I have simply given up the desire for human contact. Even so, I have at times felt enclosed in this place. And so I leave, usually sometime after twelve, and wander for hours.

That night it was very cold. But I had been in my home for several days straight, after a bad sickness kept me from working...I had only been walking for a hour, up and down the street, avoiding whatever places seemed open. I was walking along, when I distinctly heard the sound of footsteps behind me. I wanted to turn around and look, but the thought made me nervous, and so I crossed the street. But after several blocks I was still hearing the sound, and I made up my mind that whoever it was was following me... I finally worked up the courage to turn around and look, knowing that I wasn't far from my home if I needed to run. Looking back on that moment it probably would have been smarter to simply head home and not look back. But my curiosity got the better of me, and I decided to look all the same. What had been following me defied explanation.

It wasn't in the shape of a person. Instead, it as shaped like a lumpy ball, with around seventeen thin, hairy legs sprouting from all over its body. Some of the legs were thicker than others, and it were those steps that I had been detecting. All over its body were a series of mouths, far too many to really know. It had stopped moving, its smaller legs repositioning frequently, its body swaying slightly. I couldn't see any eyes, though I still had the sensation it was watching me...

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