Cochlear implants are touted as a medical miracle — and for some people, they do work wonders. For others, however, the implants can cause more harm than good.

Five years ago, a deaf woman named Sloan Churman decided to film herself at the moment she activated her new cochlear implant — the surgically implanted device that helps deaf people perceive sounds. “29 years old and hearing myself for the 1st time!” she wrote as a caption, when she uploaded the clip to Youtube.

That video has now been viewed more than 26 million times.

The viral reach of Churman’s story is no surprise, considering its emotional punch: Watch her face as she hears herself speak. Watch her, overcome by a new sensation, suspended somewhere between smiling and sobbing. You’ll probably feel your own eyes well up, too.

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