Setting goals

There are no more mapping sessions for 3 weeks now but we are still trouping into the Cochlear Implant Clinic weekly for observation appointments with Denise who is our speech therapist and case worker.  During last week’s appointment we spoke about setting weekly goals for Harry so I had some concrete milestones directly relating to his listening skills.

We are going to focus on “learning to listen sounds” which are the ones we naturally associate with a toy or an object. They are repetitive sounds and ones that are interesting for a baby to listen to.

Sounds such as brrm, brmm for car, ee or for police car, and the obvious animal sounds such as quack , quack for duck and woof, woof for dog.  It is important to not overwhelm your child with too many sounds so I was asked to pick 2-3 sounds that were from the same environment or group but had different pitches.   

I was also instructed to find varying examples of these animals to show him around the house.  Naturally the girls suggested this was the perfect time to get the dog that we have said they can’t have, or perhaps a rabbit like their friends.  All in a good cause of teaching Harry to hear his immediate environment.  Poor ol’ Harry will have to stick to regular books and puzzles like other babies.

It is really noticeable now that Harry is turning to sound. Most sounds of a substantial volume get his attention. He has already learnt that my voice is not that interesting, so I can’t say he is answering when I call him ( or that he is any different to Tess and Alice or even Dan)… but that will come with time.  A hearing baby would start to respond to their name around about now at 10 months. But that is after 10 months of hearing it repeated a thousand times a day. Harry is only 5 weeks in.

On Friday last week the HearingHenry headband arrived in the post. I mentioned this in my last blog as a Sydney mum of a profoundly deaf boy started a company selling these Online after needing to find a solution for her own young son. Her son Henry received his bilateral implants at 11 months so very similar to Harry.  How I hoped they would be the solution to keep the equipment on his head.

They are good. Probably more comfortable for Harry than the Joyband, which is quite tight on his head all day. This is a softer fabric with more stretch.  And the processors sit on the outside secured by what looks like the elastics you used to have on your braces. I am questioning their strength and whether chewing through steak and chips all day is comparable to Harry wrenching at them whenever I am not watching. I have been through 3 since Friday….

It is not the ultimate solution but on Sunday he spent over 4 hours happily rolling and crawling around our backroom chasing a balloon in peals of laughter.  With the addition of some double sided sticky tape to assist the inside of the magnet to stay on his head, the CI’s stayed on the entire time.

 Yes I did pull off most of his fluffy baby hair when I removed the magnets at 6pm that night, but he had a long time of hearing himself laugh and us along with him.

Chasing Balloons 10.5 months from Hollie Feller on Vimeo.

password remains harry2011

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