"Your child is deaf"How frustrating was it for my mom to hear this when my beloved sister was in elementary school and my mother had already endured so much shocking news. It's not everyday that your perfectly healthy newborn develops Cerebral Palsy. Not to mention having two of us at a time! My mom saw Callie respond to her voice and was certain that her being deaf was not the case!
There is a misconception that because my sister is physically handicapped that it means she is mentally handicapped. I love it when people talk really slow to her (it makes her chuckle). We never get offended we just kindly explain that she understands everything going on around her and everything you say.
Cerebral Palsy has nothing to do with your smarts and everything to do with with your motor skills (the jaundice only hurt the brain stem). It's like a perfectly intelligent brain stuck in a body that doesn't work... Yeah it pretty much sucks.
Needless to say it turns out our Calligator is not deaf and actually excelled in honors classes in high school. She graduated with honors and understands everything you say to her. I personally enjoy the looks I get in public when I carry on intelligent one sided conversations with her.
Now despite her handicap of not being able to speak, with the help of occupational thereapy we developed a form of communication. Callie now sticks out her tongue when she wants to say yes or just agree with something that is said. She frowns in order to say no or just doesn't stick out her tongue. What a great blessing this was for our family! It made communication a million times better and now makes it easier to find out what she wants.
Learning how to give these beautiful children an amazing quality of life is a journey and takes time but is well worth it. :)
Callie and I taking tongue pictures ;)