Return to top This Woman, Deaf From Birth, After 40 Years, Hears For The VERY First Time

This Woman, Deaf From Birth, After 40 Years, Hears For The VERY First Time

By - 28th January 2017

Joanne Milne had grown up with ‘Usher Syndrome,’ she had been deaf from birth.

Recently, she underwent surgery to be fitted with cochlear implants, and it proved to be a highly emotional and life-changing event.

At the foot of this article is a video of the first time she was able to experience the effects of the surgery.

Milne’s cochlear implants were switched on, on the March 24, allowing the 40-year-old to hear for the first time.

Her mother, who was present for the occasion, captured the amazing reaction to the sound of her doctor speaking. It’s the first time Milne’s heard the sound of her own voice, never mind anyone else’s.

There is something highly moving about the ordinary nature of Milne’s first moments of being able to hear, she didn’t hear classical music or a birdsong, It’s simply another person’s voice, and her own, talking in a room. And it’s beautiful. Talk about hearing the world with new ears.

Ms Milne later in an interview with the BBC 5 live, explained her dream was to one day go to Glastonbury. The organisers of the festival heard her and offered her a ticket! She accepted and was able to not only see her favourite artist Lionel Richie but for the first time hear him too.

5 Live
“I grew up knowing about Lionel Richie because my sisters used to like him…but I’m here, he’s up there on the stage and I’m watching the guy and it’s absolutely incredible.”

“I remember in the 1980s in our old house and they played all their vinyl, I can always remember Lionel Richie’s face on the floor.”

Ms Milne said at the time the switch-on had been the ‘most emotional and overwhelming experience’ of her life.

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