Sunday, March 24, 2013

Something to Know

Did you know?  Babies begin to develop speech and language from the time they are born
Did you know? ..... Hearing loss can affect a child’s ability to develop communication, language, and social skills
Did you know? .....The earlier children with hearing loss start getting services, the more likely they are to reach their full potential

Something you should know.....
Babies should have a hearing screening before they are a month old. If your child has a hearing loss, it is important to consider the use of hearing devices and/or other communication options by age 6 months. That's because children start learning speech and language long before they talk.

Did you know? .....  if your child is found to have a hearing loss
Hearing aids for children cost between $1,000 and $4,000 per ear and different kinds of aids can cost more or less than others

Something you should know....
Warranties are good but don't cover everything.  But I bet you knew that!

'Jewelry for a Voice' is a great fundraiser and fun 'get-together' for a cause.  The monies raised that evening go to a fund to help families that cannot afford to purchase and/or repair hearing aids not covered under warranties or insurances.  Children with a hearing loss must have communication available to them - why not help if possible.  Enjoy an evening out and learn a little bit more about a special group of children.  You don't have to be a sponsor - you can purchase a ticket and join us for some fun AND a little information.  This is my personal invitation to this number and to purchase your ticket 915-521-7229 ext.2989.  

Friday, March 22, 2013

Hearing-soooooo Important!

Isn't she a cutie! One of many clients I serve for listening, language, and speech.  She is very dedicated to her hearing and communicating with everyone; and so is her family!

Her family began the road to finding information and gaining access to listening and communication from the moment their daughter was born. 

There are many children in the area I live that have family looking for information.  The more we know, the more information we can share, and the more sharing, the more people will know.  Kinda' like 'it takes a village' -
only in this case - 'it takes social media'. 

This young lady was diagnosed at birth with a hearing impairment.  There are other children, because of newborn hearing screenings, also diagnosed with hearing impairments; but yea! for the screenings, otherwise how long would little ones go without the parents knowing their baby is not hearing.
Two to three of every 1,000 children in the United States are born deaf or hard-of-hearing, and more lose their hearing later during childhood, according to US Dept./National Institute for Health.

Why is this important?  Listening/hearing is the first crucial step to developing language and communicating, so early detection and identification of any type of hearing loss with newborns is crucial!  Next important step,  intervention, which means fitting that newborn with aids that will benefit them and get them on the road to hearing.  Habilitation with therapies for parents and baby goes along with that - and.....  that is the short version!  
There is a group; when parents are looking for answers, that they can get in touch with, and this group can point them in the right direction.  A group with parents that have experienced many of the same questions and will share information.  A group where parents can have someone to call or text or talk one-on-one.  
En Voz Alta is that group in the greater El Paso Texas area.

What else does En Voz Alta do?  So glad you asked - the group has started the task of identifying those who cannot afford hearing aids (for various reasons) for their child, or who need some help getting parts or repairs for hearing aids (for various reasons).  We all know how much technology costs - hearing aids are no different.  With that being said - the piece of paper in that little cutie's hand - is information on the neatest fundraiser that En Voz Alta holds in order to gain funds for the hearing aid bank.  
'Jewelry for a Voice' is an evening of fun in silent auction for beautiful jewelry pieces.  April 20th, 2013 from 6-9PM is the date.  Come have a relaxing evening with a little bit of food, a little bit of music, and some of the most beautiful jewelry pieces in silent auction from artisans and jewelry companies in the area.  I'm looking forward to it - How about you? 
Go to the Contact link for En Voz Alta at the link provided above and get more information for tickets -

Thursday, January 3, 2013

New Year Resolution - My Son

Yes, this is about my son and No, this is not a 'language lesson' per say.....Well....... here we are in a new year and here we are ready to set some resolutions to be broken.  Isn't that the way it usually goes? Everyone makes a statement to resolutely do things better, to resolutely make themselves better, or to resolutely change something!  Yet, how many of us really stick to it and have something happen?!

I don't usually share what I will and won't do for the new year, I just attempt to make some kind of change and like some millions out there, I don't usually stick to it. People have told me that if you don't share with a friend or family member what you are going to do, than more than likely ... it won't happen.  I don't want to disappoint myself, much less someone else who thinks I can make a change for the better. 

Enter my son.....and now, this year, I think I can make and keep a resolution!  Years ago, but not nearly as far back as that, my son was diagnosed with a mental health disorder.  He was not yet 18, so my husband and I could still make decisions as to how to go about helping him and ourselves.....or so we thought.  After the initial diagnosis, we both thought, we will just get him the help and medication he needs and he'll be fine.  He fought us every step of the way trying to tell us what he thought, but at that time 'mom and dad knew best' and he was 'going to listen to us'.  Four months later, my son could not keep a thought in his head or a smile on his face.  He had this blank look and slept all the time.  We were on medication number 5 when he finally asked me and his father to sit down and listen to what he had to say.  We did, I was in tears and his father was in shock.  Who says a child cannot teach an adult.....we learned quite a bit that day, some things we did not want to learn.  That day and into the next weeks we took our son off of all medications, found new doctors and attempted to make sense of what was going on in his life and in his mind.  Now I am not abdicating for 'no medications' ....that in and of itself is a decision a family should make together.  Once again, I do abdicate for discussions; talking and listening. It all plays such a huge part in family, why should it be any different when there is a difficult event taking place in your life that needs to be addressed by everyone.  If you want to move forward with major decisions in your life and of those within your life.....discussions have to take place. 

As I was saying; that day and to this day - we are still 'talking' and 'discussing' and learning about my son's mind and life.  He is my hero, each day he has to make a conscious decision that this is a new day; one that he'll make productive.  And each day he has to be resolute in living and making a change outside the system.   He does this, as he would say and is learning; 'being in the system doesn't make a change for me, it just makes me stuck and unhappy.'  Oh how I hate to see him unhappy, it breaks my heart because that is not the little boy I remember.  He is 24 years old now and he has lived a lifetime of angels and demons in his mind.  He has lived a lifetime of being up and down and he has lived a lifetime of things I can only imagine.  I will never understand completely what goes on within him but I do know he has made strides in his life from where he was those years ago and I am soooooo proud of him.  He is an artist and the love in my life!

Which leads to my resolution for the New Year.  It goes hand-in-hand with my son.  I was listening to a news story about people's resolutions to be do you get to happy?  Well, the truth is....happiness really does come from sounds so cliche but that ol' adage is true.  We can do little things for ourselves that make us happy.  Take a deep breath and smelling apple pie or the scent of flowers makes us smile and feel good.  Looking at family pictures and thinking 'what a great trip that was!' can make us smile and feel good.  Telling a joke or finding a funny story can make us feel good!  I will go one even further ....sharing those moments with someone will make you feel good....that is my resolution.
I will find something in each day to make me smile or feel good even if for a few minutes....and I will share it with my son.  On those days I feel down or sad I will remember what I said and find something to make me smile and hopefully....after I share, my son will be smiling too.  Who knows, maybe he will write a new something for it, or even have a discussion regarding it....and maybe the discussion will be with me......and I....will be listening......