Hands & Voices Header Image

March 2013 Newsletter

Dear Hands & Voices Family,

She was there when we learned of, my daughter, Ashlin’s hearing loss. She was there for Ashlin’s 2nd birthday and three days later, for her first cochlear implant surgery. She was part of Ashlin’s Early Intervention services and part of Ashlin’s language development. She was with us the day Ashlin heard the garbage truck for the first time and we all ran outside to listen and show Ashlin what she was hearing.

She was there for Ashlin’s second cochlear implant surgery, my second daughter, Mikaylin’s birth, and her two cochlear implant surgeries. Though she shook in fear when Mikaylin started to toddle towards her as a baby, she allowed Mikaylin to crawl on her, to screech in her ear (after tugging on them a bit!), and she allowed her to snuggle with her after her second CI surgery.

Read More

February 2013 Newsletter

Dear Hands & Voices Family,

1-3-6 is the “be-all” and “end-all” standard in the world of Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI), Audiology, and Early Intervention. Translation: the goal is to have every newborn screened for hearing loss by 1 month, diagnosed by 3 months, and enrolled in Early Intervention by 6 months.

At a recent National Initiative meeting, it was mentioned that rarely are the parents’ 1-3-6 emotional journey being addressed (unless the family is connected to Guide By Your Side).

As parents, we know that the first month with our newborn child we are sleep-deprived, changing a lot of diapers, adjusting to the nursing regiment, and usually getting pooped and spit-up on on a regular basis.

Read More

January 2013 Newsletter

Dear Hands & Voices Family,

Happy New Year!  I hope you had a wonderful holiday season with your family and friends.

Over the holiday break, I gave Mikaylin, my four-year-old, a quick bath. Normally, the ‘ears’ come off during bath time, but since this was going to be a quick wash off, I had her keep her ‘ears’ on. For a moment, as I was singing with her, I started to feel sad. I started to go down that path of self-pity and frustration at not being able to sing or talk during bath time on a regular basis.

But then my inner voices kicked in and reminded me to be grateful. 

Read More

December 2012 Newsletter

Dear Hands & Voices Family,As I mentioned in the last newsletter this month we are focusing on modes of communication.

This issue means so much to me as it will give parents more information and hopefully some knowledge that will help in some of the decision-making you have. Even if you have been in the process for a long time and are on an established path, I think you will still find some valuable information.

The thing to remember when it comes to choosing a mode of communication is to ask yourself what outcomes you want for your child. Do you want your child to be oral, but maybe have access to deaf adults?

Read More

November 2012 Newsletter

As I think about some thoughts and insight from respected professionals who strongly represent one communication mode, the lines from my new favorite song, “What do I stand for…” by Fun, play on the radio. I’ve been belting out the lyrics to this song for several weeks, thoroughly enjoying the beat and desperately trying to sing in tune!

Sometimes, Hands & Voices catches some “heat” by the oral or ASL supporters for not promoting one modality over the over, and this past month we received some criticism that opened the door for good discussion with professionals that I truly respect. I believe that with each controversial situation there is an opportunity to listen and learn.

Read More