The Thomas Crew

The Thomas Crew

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Cochlear Implant

I have been thinking about writing this post for a few weeks now and just haven't been able to gather all my thoughts. So It may still be a little disorganized :) For the last 3 months behind the scenes in the Thomas home we have been going through the very long process of evaluating Gavin for a cochlear implant. A very personal decision that we felt like we needed to make with no interference from the outside world. When we stared the process I had no idea if it was best for Gavin. Actually during the developmental eval I was asked multiple questions regarding our thoughts and desires for Gavin. One of the questions asked was "On a scale of 0-10 how confident are you that Gavin should get an implant"? I was very honest in my answer when I said "Five" what followed was a very surprised look on the psychologist face. You see we started this process with no expectations, I felt like we needed to look into every possible option for Gavin. Gavin is deaf and no device, no hearing aid, implant or therapy will change that. Thank goodness it won't change that because we love Gavin just the way he is. We also want Gavin to be happy. If that means no hearing aids or a cochlear implant that's Ok. Through this process we learned so much more about Gavin then we knew before. He has an amazing potential for speech. His vocal tone is different then children that have been deaf their entire life. I have always thought that Gavin was hearing earlier in his life. From all the assessments it looks like he most likely was not born deaf. Even with his hearing aids he wants to talk but can't hear enough tones to fully communicate. He still holds toys up to his ears eagerly trying to hear. For these reasons and many more we decided to go through all the testing and evaluations. We had our final meeting last Thursday which was intended to look at the devices and make some hard decisions. I have been praying for direction for weeks on this hard decision. This is actually one of the hardest decisions we have ever made.  There is a major controversy in the Deaf community regarding implants. To be honest I understand some of it but not all of it. I understand that they do not look at being deaf as a disability. I don't look at Gavin as disabled because he is deaf. The part I don't fully understand is why hearing aids are acceptable but not an implant. I have read way more articles and blogs then I need to :) and I just continue to pray we make the right decision for Gavin. The final decision will be made in a few weeks.

2 comments:

  1. I highly recommend the Nucleus 5, of course since I have it. :D As I said from the beginning, I support everything you choose for Gavin. He is a great kid and will go further than any of us expect. There will be people who will question your choice with the implant but this will be because they don't know the whole story. As a mother you are making the best choices that you know how. However it turns out is all in God's hands. Noogie the kid for me and let him know he has a fan.

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  2. You guys are such a great family. Good parents. Supportive kids. Whatever you decide with WORK for your family. Love you guys. God bless.

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