Thursday, October 9, 2008

Oh What a Walk Can Do!

I took Aiden on a long walk tonight. Just the two of us. As I walked, I MADE myself aware of all the different noises going on around us. Noises I would have never really thought twice of, or even realized I heard. Sounds I usually completely ignore, not realizing any importance about them - until I had a deaf child.

Dogs barking
Lawn mowers and trimmers
Children laughing
Cars driving by
Airplanes overhead
Moms & dad yelling for their kids
Birds screeching out
Leaves rustling as the wind blows

I paid extra close attention to the sounds I heard, so I could point each and every one of them out to Aiden. We'd stop and I'd show him, pulling him out of his stroller just to see. One dog wouldn't quit barking by the fence, but I wasn't about to move on until my boy saw what was making all this noise (the dog had those doggy windows, so we could see him).

Whether Aiden actually heard it or not, I don't know, but just in case, just by chance that he did, he was going to see what was making that noise!

"Aiden, listen. Dog. It's a dog barking. RRRrrufff, rrrufff. Dog Aiden. That dog is barking at Aiden and mommy."

He did look. He seemed more interested though in his nutso mom, but he'd stop, and he'd look. At the cars, at the dog, at the cat walking down the street (which of course I had to make the sounds for too).

Half way through the walk I had one of those damn reality checks (hate these) ... my baby is deaf. That "B" in my mind reminding me of what I already know,

"Yep Tam ... he's deaf and there's a good chance he's not hearing any of these sounds you're pointing out."

As I yelled back at that "B" to get out of my head, I reminded myself,

"BUT DON'T STOP pointing them out! They mean something. They have to."

As I continued on our walk, I thought about all of the hard work we do with Aiden now, to stimulate that auditory brain, and how we'll have to somewhat start over once he gets his CIs , because even if he's getting any bit of sound now, it will sound different once he's implanted.

I've had many people make the comment about Aiden getting his CIs and how he'll be hearing just like "all of us with no problem what so ever before you know it!". You'd think ... I thought the same thing at first. But it's just not that simple. We will have to train Aiden about

EVERY SOUND HE HEARS AND
WHAT IT IS AND
WHAT IT DOES AND
WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE,
WITH GREAT DETAIL, AND
HOW IT TASTES AND
HOW IT FEELS AND
HOW IT SOUNDS ETC. ETC.

It won't be easy. It won't be just a dog, or just a flower, or just a car. Every adjective, every verb, every adverb, every grammatical way I can to describe what he hears and what he sees, will be well worth it. Every moment will become a teachable one.

I know one day soon enough, I'll take a walk with my son and he'll be saying to me, "Mommy, look dog, rrrufff ruff. I want a dog mommy, ppplllleeease?!?"

I can't wait for this day!

4 comments:

AVT Coach said...

I found your blog site a while ago, marked it and am just now getting back to it. I love this post. You have such amazing insights into this process. I will be glad to come back and read other posts. I am an AVT therapist but my blog is primarily a personal one. Wanted you to know what a great blog you have!

Julie said...

Go Tammy go :0)

Aiden is SO VERY BLESSED to have you,

Julie

Becky said...

Someone told me that babyhood and early childhood years have the "longest days and the shortest years". You have absorbed, immersed, and lived AVT in these 6 short months - know that it will serve you well in the months and years to come. We can't wait to hear Aiden's success. We will miss you terribly in Fort Worth! Your future team in Maryland/east coast is blessed to have you as clients!
Love Becky

Loudest Mom said...

Tammy-

Such great insight you have! Aiden is such a lucky boy....It is so easy to buy into the "CI's fix everything" mode, but you are just so grounded, intelligent and loving, CI's will be a blessing for you.

There is definitely no such thing as instant gratification, but sometimes the longer, more winding roads, make the journey so much more interesting.

Love your posts and perspective,
Melissa