Friday, January 9, 2009

Happy Hearing Birthday!

Woowwww, what a day! Thanks to everyone for their encouragement, prayers and well wishes! The day could not have been more exciting for Lucas!

Activation was great, fantastic, beyond expectations, amazing and (enter any other positive exclamation here). He did really, really well. The audiologist was thrilled by his reactions, even a little bit surprised. He conditioned to the sound right away and turned consistently to the little animal in the box almost every time. He did not cry, but rather stopped what he was doing, turned his head quick, opened his eyes up wide and smiled. Unfortunately, I was kind of behind him to the side, so I couldn't see it all that well, but Nate could, and we got it recorded. I remember waiting for the same moment when he got his hearing aids (yeah, waiting for about 9 months) and it never came. We never got a reaction from him, even once. Today more than made up for that.

We got A LOT of information today, including a briefcase sized box full of lots of accessories, and instructions. Because we had equipment orientation AND activation, the information load was even heavier. I still don't feel as overwhelmed as I did when he got his first pair of hearing aids though. Maybe the HAs prepared us for today...


I would say that even in the half day that Lucas has had his processor (and he didn't even wear it during the 1 1/2 hour drive home), we have re-adjusted it probably 30 times. The behind the ear part will not stay on at all, so it just dangles behind him half the time. But every time he shakes his head or brushes up against something, the coil (which is attached to his scalp by a magnet) falls off too. Oh yeah, and he pulls it off too. So, needless to say, we already used the pilot cap on day 1. I had been warned, so I was not terribly surprised. I know that it will get better, and that we will soon find our solution for keeping it on his head. But for a while, it will be quite challenging. In fact, the audiologist left us by telling us that our biggest job in the next 2 weeks will be keeping it on. Almost every time that I would replace the magnet today though, he would stop what he was doing, look at me, and smile. That made it all worth it.

Yay, Lucas has "hearing". Or does he? Don't forget that he will never hear like you and I do. He is still deaf and he will always be deaf. His hearing has not been fixed. Only time and A LOT of work will teach his brain to make sense of the noise he's hearing. It's not as if he heard Mommy & Daddy's voices today. But, when we spoke to him, he heard buzzing and beeping, which is more than he's ever heard before. He's probably only hearing something like this - beeps, buzzes, but nothing intelligible. In a few weeks, he might hear more like this, and hopefully eventually it will sound like this. Only time will tell.

Thanks again for all the support from everyone: our families, friends, co-workers, and blog friends. You have all reached out to us with encouragment and have shared in our excitement today. Lucas is officially "hearing" on this brilliant day. Now the journey really begins. Enjoy the video that Lucas's Daddy edited for the blog!

7 comments:

Drew's Mom said...

Congratulations! You are at the beginning of a very, very excititng road!

We used the pilot caps until Drew was about 18 months old. At that point he started telling us when the coil(s) would come off, and would walk to us to put them back on. From time to time we still use them in the high chair and car. The car is such a great place for language, I never wanted to take his ears off!

We are so happy and excited for you. Now, you will get to witness daily the miracle these CI devices truly are! The hard work has begun...Good Luck!

Amanda and Joe said...

Conrgats on the activation! How exciting! Will you guys and Lucas be at Ryan's b-day party! Hopefully I'll see you then!

Landry said...

Oh my goodness!!! That is such WONDERFUL news!!! Lucas' reaction was priceless with those expressive eyebrows...

We are THRILLED that his activation went so smoothly. Our only advice is to completely scrap the BTE hooks and the Babyworn setup. Hook the top and bottom pieces of the processor together just as an adult would wear the. Buy wig tape on Amazon.com and stick the processor to his head so that it looks like it is hanging from his ear, but the entire weight is supported by his head. Email my Mommy if you have any questions! She was a wreck the first few weeks wondering what they'd gotten themselves into and how I was ever going to learn to hear if the stupid (and other choice words) devices wouldn't even stay on! Now, we have no problems!!

Christian's Mommy said...

Yeah! So excited for you guys!

Keeping the earpiece and the magnet on will get easier. Try some topstick wig tape, and also see if you can get the snugfit ear hook for him. It seems to do the trick for Christian! Just wait until he comes up to you and says "Uh-Oh Mommy, CI OFF!", and points to his ear. By 6 months hearing, Christian was doing that!

Go Lucas Go!

AJ's Mom said...

Congratulations!! Lucas' reaction to sound was awesome-great head turns!!! :) Thanks so much for sharing....

I also wanted to ask if you would mind if I posted a link to this particular post on our blog. We are working on a "CI Q&A" post...one of the ?s we hear the most is "What will it sound like?" I loved how you put the links in along with the time frame. Awesome!!

Go Lucas!!

tammy said...

HAPPY HEARING BIRTHDAY LUCAS!!! I went to post some days ago, but my computer was all jacked and I've been off since! I read your post and cried! (I'm so emotional these days!) I can't believe "OUR" time has arrived! It seems like just yesterday I "met" you and left a comment on your post about Holland. Well, Jennifer, bottoms up and cheers! Our time for that "Dutch beer" has come! Congrats on the big day!!!!

Tanna's Triplets said...

Question where did you get the cap on his head?? My son is getting his CI on Feb 4th and that looks lke it would help us out keeping him and his triplet brother and sister from pulling the CI off. If you want you can e-mail me at tannanichole@hotmail.com.

Thanks!!