Monday, February 2, 2009


For the first three years of my daughter's life, she was nearly deaf. She'd never had an ear infection so her ears were never checked for fluid. And because of my impatience, I'd finish her sentences for her so that the next 12 minutes of my life were not taken hostage by a toddler who was still learning how to put four words together, like "I want juice, please". Nope, my daughter could never get past word #2. So my brilliant solution? I would just give her what I knew she wanted and be done with it. Little did I know that she wasn't the lazy-tongued devil's spawn who would scream and break lamps (yes!) out of the frustration only known to her - my wonderful child who couldn't hear the words correctly in order to speak the words correctly and be propelled into the world of modern verbal communication.

Kevin Hart - I feel your pain. And for the record, my daughter was 80% deaf at the age of three due to a misdiagnosis of fluid buildup in the ears. Four hours after tubes were surgically placed to drain the fluid, she spoke her first full sentence and hasn't stopped talking since.

1 comment:

Chris said...

I found this very moving because I've seen this over and over. I work with 800 folks that have developmental disabilities.

I have heard story after story of people that "have behaviors" or "act out" being suddenly cured of their behavioral issues as soon as painful medical condition was finally diagnosed and removed.

But one of the saddest was an individual who was labeled as "non-verbal" for YEARS. Family had dropped out of the picture and no one ever communicated with him. One day one of my staff did a visit to his day facility (we do a monitoring thing on all services). When she speaks to anyone she signs too, out of habit. Turns out that the ENTIRE FREAKING TIME this guy knew ASL and could communicate just fine. No one ever asked or knew.

So glad you found out early!