So, this analogy may help explain a bit what it's like right now to have a CI. What happens when your computer's hard disk starts to get full? It starts to slow down. The more full it is, the slower it gets.

That's what it's like with a CI. Sound is not something I'm used to so it takes slightly longer for me to process it. The more sound there is, the longer it takes to process. That's why dancing with music is both a wonder and frustrating right now. A song starts playing but it's not just music in a dance studio. There's my fellow students and all of the sounds they make, the teachers and the sounds they make, the noise outside of the studio that penetrates into the studio, and there's all of the sounds I, myself, make. And the song isn't waiting for me to process all of it and I can't filter out the pieces I don't want to hear so I get the song in bits and pieces; what I can process sounds very chaotic and it's a mix of all of the above. Taking my CI off doesn't help because now my brain knows something is missing and it has to work just as hard to make sense of what it used to be able to process easily.

The good news is that as I keep exposing myself to all of this wonderful mess, it starts to get easier and easier. But it's still a (sometimes frustratingly) slow process. It'll keep getting better, with time and effort. I just miss being able to relax on the dance floor.