Thursday, January 31, 2013

Oh - The Irony!!

As we have traveled down this bumpy road with Lori - we have grown to see her as a happy, healthy, well-adjusted 4 year old ex-orphan who can't hear.  And that's just fine with us.  It's super hard - I never want to give the impression that raising a deaf child is easy - it ain't!  But - it's do-able.  Very. 

However, the professionals in our life - continue to remind me how un-normal she is.  Thanks for the reality check, girls.  I love you and you are awesome at what you do - but I'm seriously growing weary of your reminders.  :-)

Here is where the irony comes in.  I, too, am a Speech-Language Pathologist.  And, in my area of expertise - I am a master Diagnositician and have spent years telling countless parents how delayed their child is.  Ughhh - please forgive me.  I hope I have been as gracious as Lori's therapists - but is all this really necessary. 

Once they show me a test that compares Lori's performance with 4 year olds who are deaf and spent the first 2 years of their life in a Chinese orphanage with no access to sound  - then I'll listen.  But, when they send me pages of well-written reports telling me that she is 2-3 years delayed as compared to hearing children who have been in the homes of loving families with mamas and daddys who have given them constant interaction since day 1 - I WILL NOT BUY IT.

 I refuse to compare her to normal children.  It's hooy! 

And shame on me for comparing all my little clients all these years to normal children.  Each kiddo is unique and beautiful in their own ways.  I know, I know.....we have to have some baseline measures on which we can make educational decisions and decide who needs extra intervention - I get that - but do we as professionals have to be a constant thorn in the parent's side. 

Do you think I don't notice that she can't do what my other 4 year olds have done.

 I am PAINFULLY aware. 

I don't need you to remind me.

- from Lori's greatest advocate - her MOM!


  1. I respectfully disagree. We are raising children that will become adults. Our kids will need to compete in the world with hearing kids, kids born with more money, more advantages, but life isn't fair. If we want our kids to be able to access education, get along with other kids, and eventually compete in the world, they will need to close the gap. And the only way to know if they are making enough progress to close that gap is through comparing them to typical kids. They used to actually norm some tests on deaf kids, but the average deaf high school senior reads at the same level as a hearing 4th that the "average" we want and expect for our kids? For me, the answer is no.

  2. lori knows me and we communicate just fine. a yell then a smile. learning the signs but she knows i love her as much as the others. someday she will loosen up and we can go have ice cream together without her feeling she is leaving some place and not coming back. pawpaw