Monday, April 20, 2009

Water, Water, Everywhere!


William had a great time today, playing in his new sand and water table. He especially liked splashing the water everywhere (and on everyone else)! He loves water! This can cause some problems, since he can't get his processors wet. Today, in the middle of his play, I looked at him and all of a sudden his magnet fell off of his head and straight into the water! Thankfully, his processor just missed the water.
I am apprehensive about this summer. As much as William (and the girls) love water, how am I going to keep his processors dry and let him have fun and be a child at the same time? I can't send them out to play in the water and keep him inside, watching. That's just cruel - and it would drive him crazy. I know I can leave his processors off some, but I hate to do it for a couple of hours everyday (he already naps for a couple of hours everyday). He's doing so well with developing speech and recognizing sounds and I know it's because he keeps those processors on so much. The physical therapist has already mentioned that she's excited about a wading pool for his therapy, but I'm skeptical. Also, the girls have this neat blow up water slide that they love to jump and slide on - I know William will love it, if he gets to play on it.
Anybody been there, done that? Have any ideas?
"I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye." Psalm 32:8

Friday, April 17, 2009

Mapping at 6 Months Hearing

We had a mapping session for William yesterday. He did such a great job! Krissa has been working with him on "conditioned response," which basically means when he hears a noise, he puts the toy in the bucket, or whatever thing it is she's having him do. This is very helpful during booth testing. In the booth yesterday they used this approach. He did great! I remember watching him in the booth back when we first suspected hearing loss. We had been to a couple of different audiologists before we found Hearts for Hearing. They were trying to convince me that he had hearing because he could see the animals move. However, it was obvious to me that he was not hearing the sounds, but seeing the animals move. Anyway, yesterday it was very obvious he actually heard the sounds and it was so exciting to watch!
After the booth testing, we moved into Dr. Kasulis' office for mapping. Here he is waving to one of the animals that he had just heard.

He only has his left processor on because she works with one side at a time. What was so neat to watch was that he would be totally interested in something else (here, the bears in the box) and he would hear the beep and immediately look up to see where it had come from and wave at the animal.

watching the animal at the front


I simply cannot describe the amazing feeling of being able to watch your child hear after knowing he had a world of silence for so long. I am so very thankful for the technology that God has given us and for the passion He has given the people who love giving this gift to others!

We also saw Dr. Domek yesterday. We are looking at getting a new pump for Sherrod that will automatically test her blood sugars. That will be exciting!


"Behold, God is mine helper: the LORD is with them that uphold my soul." Psalm 54:4

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

HAIRCUT


Abby and I took William to get his haircut today. He looks so cute! It is hard to see him looking like such a little man, though. His hair was so long in the back that his magnets kept falling off. We could have tightened them up, but that's a little bit scary, as they might get too tight and cause infection. We just opted to get his hair cut. He did great!
BEFORE (This is William's "morning do"):

AFTER:


Also, we got the last of the test results back. Good news: he has all of his chromosomes in whole. That is a relief! Now we are just waiting to see a geneticist next week and the neuro opthalmologist in May.

Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them. Psalm 119:165

William's Birthday Party


William is finally feeling better! We celebrated his birthday last night. He had a great time with many new experiences. As you can tell from the picture above, the flame on his cupcake held his interest quite well.



I love this picture. Abby had been feeding William cake and ice cream and he just reached out and gave her a hug. I'm glad I caught it on film. He is so very sweet! He often loves on us on an impulse. Of course, the girls all treat him very sweetly, too!

Here are a couple of videos of William talking on the phone. We thought they were funny. I love that he can hear people on the phone and not just read lips! He finds the phone extremely interesting!


This video is from the actual day of his birthday when some friends called to wish him "Happy Birthday!" If you listen closely, you can hear poor William's raspy lungs when he "talks." What you don't see on the video is that when the call was over and I told him to say, "Bye-bye," he not only waved, but vocalized as well!
video


This video is from his birthday party last night when more friends called to wish him "Happy Birthday!" He was not super interested in holding the phone to his ear, as there was so much going on, but when Abby turned it to speaker he was very talkative and jabbered at the phone a lot!
video

For more on William's birthday, see the girls' blog: http://www.sendingoutarrows.blogspot.com/

And now, saith the LORD that formed me from the womb to be his servant, to bring Jacob again to him, Though Israel be not gathered, yet shall I be glorious in the eyes of the LORD, and my God shall be my strength. Isaiah 49:5

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

For William

Some fun pictures in honor of William's birthday:
Here he is taking a picture of Wallace:
"I will praise thee; for, I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well." Psalm 139:14

William is 2!

Well, our sweet little boy is 2 today! Time goes by so quickly. It seems this last year has been a whirlwind of doctors and surgeries and therapy, but he is doing so well. It's so exciting to see the changes in his behavior since the implant. My once passive, complacent child is now active and bubbly and happy. Now if there were only something we could do for his lungs. We made it through the winter season with no pneumonia, but spring hits and now we're having trouble. We went to the doctor yesterday because he's been having trouble breathing and his ear began draining blood early yesterday morning. He has some crackling in his lungs, hopefully we'll be able to head things off before they get too bad. At least he's finally able to rest.

(I don't know what the glare is on the picture - there's nothing sticking out of his head)
We are praying that the ears don't turn into another big dilemma like the mastoid cavity infection.
Anyway, we are waiting to celebrate his birthday until he's feeling better. We have several sick in our house. Most of us are getting better, however, Elly started throwing up this morning. What started with Michael last week has now run through everyone except Sarah and Sydnee. Thankfully it doesn't last long. However, with a family our size, it still takes awhile to get through everyone. Hopefully, we will be celebrating William's birthday in full health soon!

"Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you." 1 Peter 5:7

Sunday, April 5, 2009

6 months hearing!

Have you ever stopped to think about just how remarkable the Cochlear Implant is? The fact that God has given man the ability to take a person who is profoundly deaf and give them sound is astounding! When I think about how drastically William has changed over the past 6 months, it almost always brings me to tears!
Take this picture for example.

Here he is singing along with "The Itsy, Bitsy Spider." He is even vocalizing!

Six months ago, William was completely silent, with no form of communication at all. We were doing some baby signs with him and we thought he understood some, but he did not really reciprocate. Now, he has several words that we are absolutely sure he understands. (NO LIP READING either, which he has also gotten very good at!)
When I say "drink," he does the sign. When I say "night-night" or "shhhh," he puts his finger to his lips. When I say "eat," he does the sign. When I say "more," he does the sign. These are all things I'm saying with my hand covering my mouth, so I know he's hearing and not seeing the words! What's really strange is: we had pretty much stopped using signs, trying to get him to listen, but he must remember.
He's also vocalizing much more, singing along with us, and pointing out new sounds a lot!

As I think about how good God is to man, giving us knowledge, talents, and abilities to do so much good, it makes me think about another time in history when man decided to use their talent for evil.
And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth." Genesis 11:4
We know from Scripture that God did scatter them and confused their language. We have a tendency to be prideful, thinking that everything is within our control. I am thankful that the majority of William's care providers realize that they are only men (mankind, as several of them are women!). I am thankful that they are willing to give it their all, then trust God for the rest. And that's exactly what we're doing...

On a lighter note, here is a fun picture of my little man.

He looks BIG to me in this picture! He is trying very hard to walk. He is always so proud of himself when he stands alone and we all clap for him! I LOVE that great big smile on his face when he hears us clapping!

And here's a disclaimer for all of you keeping count: I realize his "hearing birthday" is actually in 3 days, but that will also be his 2nd birthday, so I decided to post this a little early! Thanks for keeping up with us!

"And the LORD shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not." Isaiah 58:11