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Sunday, July 14, 2013

HOME Sweet Home!

Much as I love my children, and much as I wanted to be with my daughter while she underwent cochlear implant surgery, recovery and activation a month later, I must admit I am very happy to be home!  No regrets!  This is what parents do for their loved ones!  I would do it again for her other ear and for my other daughter who also has Usher Syndrome (progressive hearing and vision loss).  But nevertheless, HOME IS HOME, and it feels great!

She has documented much of what transpired on FB during the past 5+ weeks, so I'm not going to rehash it.  She is immensely motivated for this to work to its maximum.  For all of us, it was a huge learning experience.

Far from perfect, a CI does NOT give instant speech recognition to the deaf.  From a few others' experiences, we set ourselves up for some disappointment with expectations that were faulty.  Late deafened adults generally benefit more immediately from a CI because of the integrity of their auditory system from birth.  Someone, like Roberta, who has been severe-profoundly deaf since about age 10 (and who tested in the mild to moderate hearing loss range from 13 MONTHS!), has to retrain or simply train her brain to recognize speech sounds in a new way.  All that she hears right now are what she calls "echoey sonic beeps" that will eventually, with a great deal of patience and practice, evolve into meaningful sounds, words, language!

She is and will continue to function quite well with a combination of CI, hearing aid, and excellent lip-reading skills.  And she is eager for the transition to evolve, because she wants to be able to continue her job successfully for many years to come.  She is a school psychologist.

Her audiologist was absolutely thrilled with her results one week post-activation, so that enabled us to finally come home and for her motivation level to soar once again!

We are so pleased with her surgeon's work, Roberta's fast healing, and what the future may hold for her.  Thank you to all her family, friends, neighbors, FB friends, FB groups (public and private) that have encouraged her along the way.

She'll be going to the Northeast Cochlear Implant Conference at the end of the month.  I hope she'll begin to take an active role in educating the public in all aspects of her life with Usher Syndrome.

BTW, when her hair is down, you can't see the CI or the magnet at all!

1 comment:

Chrissie Marshall said...

What an amazing result and your daughters are so brave and realistic if that makes sense. Wonderful surgery and as you say, you can hardly now see a trace of the scar. Hoping that it continues to go well for them. xx

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