Monday, January 9, 2012

three years

Happy 3rd Hearing Birthday, Lucas!

It's been three years since Lucas's hearing journey began. We were told that day to keep our hopes high and our expectations low, but we learned quickly that he would far exceed our expectations. We did, however, have no idea that we'd be where we are today... with a little boy who never stops talking, who is ahead of his hearing peers in terms of language, who very successfully attends a mainstream preschool, who is very social and makes friends easily, and who is just a typical kid. 

Life is so normal, and easy (ok, minus the newborn...) right now, that sometimes I forget how far we've come. Today I sat down with Lucas and watched all of his youtube videos from his first year of life. I'm so thankful that I chronicled his listening/speaking/communicating milestones in this way, because I forget about the baby steps and the joy in the little things that first hearing year. Lucas got a kick out of the videos, and I cried a lot. He kept wanting to know why I was crying. My response? "It's complicated." It's tough to explain to a 4-year-old the sorrow, joy and relief that those videos evoked. 

I forget sometimes that he went from beeps and buzzes to coherent receptive language in less than 3 months... that by 6 months he had 11 words/approximations... that by 12 months he was caught up to his hearing peers. I forget sometimes how incredibly hard we worked that year. The messy house you see in all of his videos? Totally worth it in exchange for more mommy therapy. That 7 month hiatus I took from my job to teach Lucas to listen and speak? It was worth every moment spent and every penny lost. 

We have been incredibly blessed by this journey. We are forever grateful to Graeme Clark, the inventor of the cochlear implant, Dr. K. for his skillful implantation, and all of his therapists, who have helped teach him to listen and speak. We can't wait to see what this next year will bring for him. Enjoy the video from his activation day!