The 3-hour battery of tests they ran me through at the communications clinic was fascinating, and yup - I've got a mild-to-moderate speech impediment characterized by various kinds of nasal resonance (I rely on bone condunction to hear parts of my own speech, so I project my voice towards my nose instead of out through my mouth). It's typical of people with hearing impairments. Also, I randomly drop syllables at the end of words, don't articulate consonants, and have a blasted hard time with the R and L sounds (as in, I can't say them, really).

This is all pretty old-hat to anyone who's ever heard me talk. Starting in 10 days, I'll be fixing it. Let's see how fast I can learn to control something I can't sense... it took maybe a week of daily practice with a teacher to click into being able to pronounce consonants in Chinese I could not differentiate between, so I have confidence I'll be able to do it even faster in my native language.

Also hard (but something I thought I'd gotten used to): playing music I can't hear. I made an awful mess of the trio when Tank and Nikki and I tried it out for the first time yesterday. I've been accustomed to playing an invisible right hand for a long time, but when other instruments came in around the same frequencies as the right-hand parts I could hear, suddenly my right hand disappeared.

And then my hand was playing notes that I couldn't hear but all these other notes around the same range (but sounding suspiciously like a cello and a clarinet) were coming in where I could hear with straining - it's like moving your fingers trying to play "Jingle Bells" but having "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" come out very softly and at a different tempo instead. Cause-and-effect breaks down. I flounder.

It got a little better when I switched from the piano to the crummy electric keyboard because then I could see the other folks playing rather than having faint disembodied voices coming from behind.

This is going to take some getting used to.