A mother of two who goes by the name Michele Randolph, who is hearing-impaired, graduated from the University of North Carolina in Charlotte despite the challenges she faced at the age of 50.
According to her, she lost all of her ability to hear when she was 12 years old, but she did not let that stop her from living a normal life. She eventually got married and had two children.
“I basically raised both of my children while deaf. My oldest one had to grow up fast; she basically did all the doctor phone calls, everything for mommy,” she said.
Her youngest daughter, who was born prematurely, had cerebral palsy, autism, and a severe brain injury. She said just seeing her served as an inspiration for her to get through her schooling.
In 2019, Randolph had the opportunity to undergo a cochlear implant and hear her children for the first time.
FYI: A cochlear implant is a small electronic device that electrically stimulates the cochlear nerve (nerve for hearing).
“When they activated me and I could hear their voices, I was amazed that how I imagined them to talk was actually how they spoke,” Randolph said.
“It was just amazing. It was like a lightbulb clicked for me, and I knew then there was nothing, nothing anymore that I could not do.”
Things were going great for Randolph until she lost her grandmother and her husband after a few months. She also had to undergo emergency surgery to repair a gallbladder operation gone wrong.
But still, she was determined to overcome everything. She finally received her degree and she even did it ahead of schedule.
“I worked really hard for this; I worked really hard,” Randolph told ABC 11 News.
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