When now 24-year-old Jekarra Gaines was 15, she started losing hearing in her left ear.
Unfortunately, it dealt a huge blow to the aspiring singer from Atlanta, Georgia, as it became more and more difficult for her to hear her own voice over the years. However, she didn’t let that stop her from pursuing her dream. “I was devastated,” she said. “It changed my whole life. But I practiced and adjusted.”
Not wanting to be treated differently by the people around her, Gaines hid her condition and didn’t seek treatment for quite some time. “I always talked to people on my right side and learned to read lips also,” she said. But after recently noticing that her right ear was starting to be affected as well, she finally went to a doctor for hearing aids — and the results brought tears to her eyes.