Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Can you hear me now?
I'm not the first parent to wonder if my kids are deaf OR just choosing NOT to hear me.
Such was the case with Lincoln.
When he talked, it was always LOUD.
When he'd call for me and I'd answer with my back turned, he wouldn't hear me.
He ALWAYS acted like he couldn't hear me.
I was none too happy about that, believe you me,
BECAUSE I thought he was choosing NOT to listen.
Shame on me.
I called an audiologist.
I was going to nip this in the bud.
They tested his eardrums to see if they vibrated correctly.
The test looks for steep peaks as sound travels through the ear.
Lincoln's eardrums FLATLINED. No vibration.
She put him in a sound-proof room and ran all sorts of tests,
first through the eardrum,
then, just through the bones of the ear.
The first test showed extreme hearing loss in both ears.
The second test showed perfect hearing.
As she watched him while administering the test through the eardrums, she said that he looked frustrated. He was trying so hard to pass the test. She could tell he was guessing. He couldn't hear.
When she switched to the sound passing only through the bones of his ear, he came alive. He was confident. He felt in control. He passed with flying colors.
Our next step was an ear, nose, and throat doctor. After more tests the results showed that Lincoln has thick, mucousy gunk behind his eardrum which prevents it from vibrating. His adenoids are completely blocking his eustacean tubes, connecting the ear to the nasal passage. AND his tonsils are nearly touching. Therefore, ALL must be removed and tubes put in both ears. The gunk developed from a past ear infection that healed EXCEPT the gunk never went away. It festered over time, at least 12 weeks. Lincoln's only had a few ear infections so I couldn't remember the last time he'd had one.
They said that he's hearing NOTHING at school, it's as if his head is UNDERWATER!
Oh, my heart sank.
I cried thinking about how frustrated he must feel at school every day.
I cried because of all the times I got in his face and said (loudly), "PUT. ON. YOUR. SHOES."
I cried because life must be so hard when you're trying to hear AND YOU JUST CAN'T.
I sent an email to his teacher and get this, her response: "At the beginning of the year they perform a hearing screening for all students. Lincoln DIDN'T PASS THE TEST BUT THEY TOLD ME NOT TO INFORM YOU YET!!!!! I was mad. All of his frustrations could have been prevented IF THEY HAD TOLD ME THE FIRST WEEK OF SCHOOL!! You better believe I went to the principal about this. She looked into it. Yesterday I got a call from the speech pathologist at the school. She was FULL of apologies. She gave him the test and was going to check him again two weeks later, but forgot. She was new to the school, trying to organize the speech program and it slipped past her. Luckily I'd had weeks to simmer down. I was myself again, very willing to forgive and move on.
As it stands, Lincoln will have surgery on November 3rd. Pray for the little guy. I'm sure we'll have a rough few days. On the bright side, he'll be in heaven as he drowns in jello, pudding, and popsicles.
I can't wait to see the change in Lincoln. I can't wait to see his eyes bright as he listens and can hear! They say he'll be a new little man. Wish us luck.
at 10:29 AM