Here's Tate, at three and a half. His audiologist is making his first ear mold impression and he's investigating the strange pink stuff in his ear. (It doesn't hurt, but it must feel really weird.)
And, PS, isn't he adorable?!
And then a few weeks later, here we are back at Children's. I'm putting in the ear mold and Tate is wondering why on earth people mess with his ears every time he comes here. I mean, WHAT, already.
And then I turned it on. And there was sound.
That look on his face is worth a million bucks. He told me later that summer that he could hear rain. And birds. And whispers. The quiet sounds. Things he'd never heard before.
And around our house, hearing aids became COOL. Gunnar wanted his own, and Tate was glad to help him out ;D
Tate certainly never let his disability hold him back.
And here we are, years later, having made the transition from hearing aids to cochlear implants. Well, we're still in process. It's only been a week since his new processor was activated and Tate is doing great. Kerri (our fabulous audie) put him in the sound booth yesterday and he's made a ton of progress just since last Thursday or Friday. I won't quote tests and scores at you... just know, he's doing great.
He reports that I (and others) no longer sound like mice. We're still kind of robotic and muffled - not crisp and clear yet. But again, ONE WEEK.
And tonight he had a first, and I didn't have my camera handy. (Mom fail). So I'm reposting a gratuitous Christmas photo, because this is the kind of smile I got :D
Or this one. Tate has a great smile :D
We hooked up his Compilot, blue-tooth-linked it to Kerry's cel phone, and Tate called Grandpa and Grandma Grasshopper.
That sounds so ordinary. He made a phone call.
That's the first time in his life - the first time EVER - he's been able to hear clearly on the phone. That's huge. That's independence. Making a phone call can now be ordinary, like it is for everybody else.
All this technology... it's like drinking from a fire-hydrant. There's more we need to learn how to do. But for now?