Personal, Post-Activation

What It’s Like to Go To Six Flags Great Adventure With a Cochlear Implant

Hey guys! Sorry for the lack of updates lately. Been crazy busy with work  lately and a lot of exciting things going on in my personal life. But I have tons of updates and I’m planning to break them up in a couple of posts for you guys. Actually, planning to write several posts at once right now and schedule them out on different days for publication. I’ve actually been sick all week and in bed. I’m not 100%, but definitely beginning to feel better today and I’m getting really sick of staying in bed watching movies all day, so now will be a good time for me to knock out a few of the posts. :).

On April 18th I went to Six Flags with my boyfriend and his family. This is the first time I’ve been to Six Flags since I was in high school 7 or 8 years ago. It was also my first amusement park trip since getting my cochlear implant. Needless to say I was both  very excited and a nervous.

The biggest concern I had was how to store my cochlear and my hearing aid. I knew that the rides at Six Flags could definitely be a bit extreme. Sure, not ALL of the rides are, but my boyfriend and I are all about harder, faster, and intense when it comes to our rides. We wanted to go on as many different roller coasters as possible. My hearing aids could never stand a chance on these coasters and my cochlear most definitely couldn’t.

I tried asking some people in one of the cochlear implant groups I joined on Facebook what they do and if they knew anything about the lockers. Unfortunately, they were a lot less helpful that I was expecting them to be. Most people said to just shove it in my pocket. Others said to wear it — it would be cool to hear what the roller coaster actually sounded like. I didn’t agree with either of these ideas. I mean, my cochlear implant (which was covered by insurance, thank god!) was well over $10,000. You lose it and you can’t exactly replace it. Needless to say, I didn’t want to take any chances with it,

I decided to call Six Flags directly to get some information on the lockers. I was really hoping to speak to someone to find out if I could possibly get a discount or something on the lockers. I remembered back in high school that they had lockers located right by the roller coasters and they were a couple of dollars a piece to use. A couple of dollars doesn’t sound like much, but it adds up quickly if you plan to go on many rides and need a locker for each one. The other option was to use one of the main lockers located by the entrance gate for the day. The only problem with that is then I wouldn’t have my cochlear for the times when I wasn’t on rides. I wanted to be able to interact with my boyfriend and his family, too!

Unfortunately, calling Six Flags really didn’t get me anywhere either. I couldn’t even talk to a human.  It was all completely automated. The information they were able to give me about the lockers was nothing more than what I already knew. Pretty disappointing. I realized all I could do was just go and figure it all out when I got there.

I’m very blessed to have a great boyfriend who really cares about me and always watches out for me. Part of him caring and watching out for me is making sure that everything with my cochlear is always taken care of. While my boyfriend and I are huge roller coaster people (we did stand in line for over 2 hours just to ride Kingda Ka that day after all…which was well worth the wait), his mom and little sister are not. We were able to give my cochlear and hearing aid to his mom to hold for me while we went on rides. This was by far our best option.

larry six flags

My boyfriend gets a bit crazy when he goes to Six Flags. That’s why I love him. 😉

We did try to get a locker. Six Flags does offer a bit if a discount — I believe it was $20 for 6 lockers that can be transferred from ride to ride or something? The only problem? The machines don’t like to take money. They take the first few dollars and then they die. And you can’t get your money back until the end of the day. Not cool, Six Flags. Not cool.

If you have a person you can give your cochlear off to like I did, it’s still the best option though. Because then, so long as you stay with that person, you can always put it back on after the ride is over and converse with others. You don’t really miss out on anything. I was also able to hear the music Six Flags plays. This was very amusing to me. I actually never knew Six Flags played music in their park since I could never hear it before!

Six Flags isn’t the easiest park in the world to get around if you have a cochlear implant and/or a hearing aid, but so long as you have a plan, you can manage.

June 6th is actually Deaf Awareness Day at Six Flags Great Adventure. Is anyone going? If Larry isn’t working and if the weather is nice we may try to go. My boyfriend and his family actually have season passes, so we’re definitely planning on taking a few more trips to Six Flags this summer. I’ll definitely tell you guys of my experiences!

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