Just about the same time I set out on the journey to have a cochlear implant I was also invited to be the commencement speaker at graduation for the College of Nursing and Health Professions for USI, my alma mater. An alumni is selected from each college to speak each year.
During the application and evaluation process for the surgery, there wasn’t really anything that gave me more anxiety than thinking about the timing of surgery and commencement on April 30, 2016. I knew that I needed to be “functional” at the event.
I thought I would need at least a month after the implant was activated to be as close as possible to that “functional” place. This meant that if I couldn’t arrange surgery before the middle or end of March, I wouldn’t schedule it until May. It was a difficult reality, but one I was prepared to deal with.
When I found out surgery would be February 24th, it was such a relief! Keeping my commitment for graduation wasn’t optional and now surgery would not have to be postponed. I’ve met people who have waited up to 2 months for a surgery date, so I know how fortunate I am.
Last Saturday, I was able to fulfill my commitment – reach a goal that I had set. There were nearly 300 graduates who participated in the commencement ceremony and I talked to them for about 12 minutes encouraging them by telling them “Don’t Just Show Up”. No matter what they do when they leave commencement, even during potential upcoming interviews, be prepared, be driven, have a vision and plan to make a difference. It was a wonderful experience!
Oh, and before I forget, I got the insurance approval letter this week. My next surgery will be June 8th!