SJ got her hearing aids on Friday. It was a long and exhausting day, but it had a good turn out. Our doctor told us that there were so many different reactions with children that you just never know what to expect. They may cry, they may squirm or act confused, they may not react at all. Or she said in a few cases you have that “Disney moment” where the child lights up when they hear their first sound and act like this is what they were waiting for their whole life!
For SJ we did not have a Disney moment. In fact, I would call it more like a dentist moment or worse (for the stereo typical child that does not like the dentist). The hearing aids were squealing, she got very upset and kept trying to pull them out. The Doctor wanted to make sure that J and I knew how to put them in so she had us practice a few times before we left and it was rough. She repeatedly told us that we just had to work through this stage and when SJ takes them out just put them back in. She cried and cried and looked at me with those big puffy eyes full of tears like MOM save me! I pictured us wrapping her up in our arms like a straight jacket just to get her out of the office with them still in. It was not a pretty mental picture. LUCKILY, we were told to give her a rest and try again when we got home. We are supposed to start with 2 hours a day, increasing the amount of time she keeps them in each day, and by a week they basically need to be in at all times.
After a stop at McDonald’s and a nap, I said Okay, let’s do this. Hearing Aid boot camp here we come. We pulled out all the stops; squeezable yogurt, a juice box, and a popsicle. J pushed her in the swing which was perfect because she had to hold on. We watered the garden and played fetch with the dog. These are all activities that she loves and kept her hands occupied and her mind distracted. By the end of the two hours I felt like we had tamed the beast.
Once she had warmed up to the idea of the devices I got out my camera to document this moment. These shots will give you an up close look at her new daily accessories. The aids are attached to a bungee cord that clips on the back of her shirt.
For now the aids are encased in a flesh colored sock thingee (don’t mind my technical jargon) and this is to prevent damage if they do fall out or hit something.
There are still a lot of unknowns with her condition and a lot of trial and error from what I’m told. The volume starts at HALF of what it should be and will gradually increase over the next 3 weeks. So far I’ve noticed a few times that she seemed to react to a noise (once was at the doctors office when they tested with some maracas.) Honestly though, it’s hard to tell what she can hear and I try not to jump to conclusions. I’ve learned a lot about patience through this journey so I guess we’ll just have to wait and see how she does as the volume increases and the speech therapy begins. Our Disney moment will come. God has a plan. I really do believe that.