Saturday, November 21, 2009

New Challenges

On Friday, I took Trista in for her post-tube hearing test. The test was long...very long. Trista's Cardiologist would not allow the Audiologist to sedate her for the test (there are too many risks) so I had to get her to sleep while we were there so that they could test her while she was sleeping. The test was called an Auditory brainstem response (ABR) and Auditory stead-state response (ASSR). These tests measure brain waves following stimulation by sound. It was not painful in any way for Trista, so I was thankful for that.

As I stated above, the test was long. Start to finish about 1 hour and 45 minutes. The more they looked, the more nervous I became. I could read the looks on their didn't look good and I knew I was about to hear something I didn't want to hear.

After the test, the Audiologist asked me to step into the consultation room so that she could discuss the results with me. Again, this seemed all too familiar. The looks, the extra people coming in to see the results, the consultation room. I was overwhelmed with the flashback of when they first told us about Trista's heart. I couldn't hold back the tears. I knew that Trista would be hit with yet another impairment.

The Audiologist started off by telling me that Trista definitely has significant hearing loss. The tubes were not able to help correct the problem. The hearing loss is in both ears - the left being worse than the right. She can hear some, but she is only able to hear conversational speech at a distance of 3-4 feet at best. She will need to be fitted with hearing aids ASAP in order to help her not fall way behind in her speech and development. She did prep me for some imperfect speech production down the road for Trista and the need for ongoing speech therapy. She gave me lots of books on hearing loss in children and support groups to turn to. We are scheduled on December 10th to talk to the Otolaryngologist (also known as an ENT doc) to discuss everything with him in more detail.

Although the news was not at all easy to hear, we still feel so blessed. Blessed to have Trista and hold her. Blessed to see her every morning and melt when we see her smile. This is just going to become another part of our lives. A life we wouldn't change for anything!


  1. That's a major bummer but you're exactly right - you're blessed to have her in your lives and this has to be easier to face than CHD! I'm sure they'll suggest you get her in for speech at CCHMC but the wait list tends to be very long....not sure where you are in the Cinci area but if you're in the northern part, you might try ABC Pediatric Therapy - we've been really happy with the progress we've seen in our son since we started going there! I'll keep you all in my prayers - Trista's so lucky to have you and she's gonna be just fine!!! Love the picture of the two of you!!!

  2. Just wanted to send along some electronic support! Our little guy has a moderate loss (60dB in the low and mid frequencies) and he is doing really well- hearing aids really help a lot, and the technology just keeps getting better and better.

    Also, if she decides that hearing aids make fun teething toys, pilot caps from Hanna Anderson are wonderful. They keep those little fingers away from their ears!

  3. I am so sorry that you received that news! {{{HUG}}}

    It will be ok. A friend of mine has a little boy with a CHD, was born a preemie and he too has to use hearing aides. He has done really well with the help of a speech therapist. Her blog is listed on mine under "A Little Monkey Business".

    Stef, Ryan, Wyatt and Logan

  4. I saw that you are following my blog. Your profile brought me here. What a precious child Trista is! So sorry that you have had to receive difficult news about her hearing, but you're right, I'm sure she's a blessing every day! I look forward to following her story.

  5. You are so positive and inspiring! What a great mom you are! Trista IS such a blessing!

  6. It never gets easier.. no matter how many time you receive a "diagnosis". You would think that sometime over the course of time your skin would thicken but it doesn't.

    I can tell you that this, like everything, will not be easy but you will make it through just like you did the heart stuff. You will make and so will Trista and when she is walking down that aisle to graduate or toward her husband at her wedding this will all be a distant memory. I have to hold on to things like that or most days would be overwhelming for me.

    We will be praying for you from Kentucky :)