Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Catching up

Sorry we have been a little distracted lately, though I can't imagine why! I have a few posts that I've started the last two months and just haven't managed to put up yet, so I am posting them today, however, posting date reflects the date I started the posts, so don't be surprised if you think you missed something. Our picture updates can be found by clicking here.

There is something I haven't told (some of) you...

I didn't share it not because I didn't want to tell you, but because until recently we didn't have much information to tell. We finally got some answers on Friday, so now I will share with you what it is that I have been worrying about lately.

When your child is born you count the fingers and toes and take a general stock that all is present and accounted for. The pediatrician also does an exam and assures you that you have brought a perfect little baby into the world. So when we were told that Tristan did not pass his infant hearing screening in his right ear I was surprised and scared that my illusion of the perfect baby would be shattered so soon. We were told to wait two weeks and then repeat the exam, and not to worry (yeah, right) since we did not have any of the risk factors for hearing issues and while 10% of infants do not pass the first time, most will pass the second time. We didn't.

The second results were exactly the same as the first. Followed by more waiting for a test to confirm the screening results and determine the extent of the loss. We did an Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR) test where I had to keep Tristan awake until his appointment at 2pm (this was impossible, but I managed to only let him have a total of about 20 minutes of sleep from 8am to 2pm), and then we had to hook him up to 4 electrodes to measure the activity in response to differing levels of sounds in each ear while he slept. We thought we would find out the results immediately, but were then told the doctor would call us after she had reviewed the results. Another 5 days of waiting, and then on Tristan's 2 month birthday we learned that he does have hearing loss in his right ear, but it appears to be mild, and the doctor thinks it is still possible that it will improve as the ear develops (though it could also get worse). We will continue to monitor it and see how it goes. Hearing in his left ear is normal, so this should not cause him issues if it does not worsen, and considering all of the possible obstacles that other parents and babies are facing right now, this is a very small issue, but no matter how small, a mother always worries. For now I am happy to have learned that Tristan's ability to sleep through the chaos of his screaming sister, barking dogs, and the cat trying to climb in the swing with him is just part of his sweet nature, and not due to his inability to hear the world around him.