Friday, April 8, 2011

How can a deaf Mom hear her babies when they cry?

I've had a few people ask me this and I'm sure there are some who were curious but were afraid to ask thinking they might offend me. As I've mentioned before, I love to talk and questions like this don't offend me in the slightest! First let me say that, I'm very fortunate to have a husband that hears normal and not only that, he is very attuned to his kids when sleeping. If one of the kids cough in a weird way, he jumps out of bed and runs to them to make sure they are OK, it absolutely melts my heart that God gave this kind, loving (and he'll want me to include manly) man to be my husband.

When I had my first child, I was very nervous that I would not hear him when he needed me, but that turned out to not be the case thankfully. At night we put him in a bassinet near the bed, and at first I slept with my hearing aid on for a couple of weeks, but as time went on I became more relaxed with our routine and trusted my husband to wake me up to feed him during the night. When he outgrew the bassinet, we tried putting him in his crib, in his room, but I didn't like that, having him so far away, my intuition wanted me to have him close by. At this time we all took a trip with my husband to Indiana so he could attend training there for his job. We ended up putting Kade in bed with us and he slept so well, in fact we all did. So when we arrived back home, I started putting him in our bed to sleep between my husband and I (with his consent of course). Luckily for us, Kade was not much of a mover when he slept, so we didn't worry about getting kicked in the face or other parts of our body :) We all slept well and Kade started sleeping through the night, but when he awoke hungry, I would wake up and know that he was awake and hungry before he would start crying, it was Mommy radar or something. During the day, we would take naps together and I would sleep with my hearing aid on just in case the Mommy radar didn't work. Kade slept in our bed until I was well along in my pregnancy with our second child, then my husband would snuggle with him in his new firetruck toddler bed until he fell asleep.

When my husband was at work during the day, I would always keep Kade close by in a bouncer or on the floor to play with toys or I would play and talk or sing to him. Sometimes he and I would go for walks in his stroller and I would constantly check on him to make sure he was happy or if he needed anything. I never felt comfortable just leaving him in a room by himself to go do something because I could not hear what was happening in the room. I have tried to use baby monitors, but I could not hear the sounds very well, so I ended up giving it away to another mother who could use it. I have taught each of my children from the time they could talk that they had to look at me so I could read their lips to understand them. Now they are older and well trained in that regard, I don't have to be so vigilant about paying attention to everyone in case they might be speaking to me, they know to come up to me and wait till I am looking at them before speaking.  Life as a deaf Mom is more relaxing now than it was when they were babies, they are all very close to each other and watch out for each other as well. God has given women a strong, unique, unexplainable bond with their children and it's there whether you are deaf, blind, mute or normal, it's an awesome gift!

Now my oldest child is one year away from becoming a teenager...how a deaf Mom gets through that, I have yet to learn :)

2 comments:

  1. Since I've known you all my life .... I have never even thought about this. Your hearing or lack there of just was never an issue. At least for me, it was just the way things were. It's interesting to me how you have adapted and overcome so much and live so well in a hearing world.

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  2. Thanks Kim, you are such a sweetie! One of the things I love so much about our family is we don't look at any of our handicapped relations as handicapped, to us they are just another person whom we love. :)

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