Sunday, December 30, 2007

AN INFORMED MOM IS A POWERFUL MOM

For ten and a half years I did not know that yahoo groups existed. The last nine months of reading and sending messages, exchanging information with other parents living my same experience at different points of the journey has made me a stronger and better mother. Yesterday, we went to Pisa for Jordan's second mapping of the NUCLEUS FREEDOM. We sat down at the table: the audiologist with her computer, Jordan next to her, Luca behind Jordan and I was seated across from the audiologist. After hooking his processor up to the computer, she began making adjustments, but she didn't ask specific questions and I started getting antsy. Do I open my big, fat mouth or stay silent and let her do her job? Well, I am just not a patient person and my kid's hearing was at stake, so of course my aggressive self took over and I began firing questions. Another important aspect is to know your kid, observe him and his behavior, obviously that was the main reason I started collaborating with the audiologist. We worked on adjusting the level of background noise, by concentrating on sounds in the room like the fan, "Jordan, is the fan loud or soft?" "Is my voice louder or softer than the fan?" "Can you hear your own voice?" "Is it louder or softer than my voice?" etc. Then, I asked her if she did the Ling Test? She said she didn't know what the Ling Test was, I thought maybe it was an American thing, so I asked her to repeat some consonants and vowel sounds. She began going through the consonants like this: "ABBA- AKKA-ADDA-ALLA-ASSA" but when the consonant is attached to the vowel "A" it's easier for Jordan to distinguish as opposed to when the consonant is alone or attached to the "ee" sound. So, I started in an I'm-really-not-trying-to-do-your-job way, more like an I'm-a-proud-member-of-the-Pediatric-Cochlear-Implant-Circle-and-I'm-informed kind of way to do some Ling testing that you can see here with Nicole: To watch video either double click to go to youtube or deactivate music on the upper righthand side of the page

BECAUSE ANOTHER MOM FROM THE CI CIRCLE HAD SENT ME THIS VIDEO! AND ALSO BECAUSE I HAD SEEN ABBIE'S VIDEO OF HER ACTIVATION AND THE QUESTIONS THAT HER AUDIOLOGIST HAD FIRED ONE AFTER ANOTHER AT HER!

THANKS AGAIN, ABBIE, YOUR VIDEO HELPED MY SON!
At the conclusion of the mapping I asked the audiologist if she had made a lot of significant changes in respect to the old one, and her response was, "Yes." We also made certain that the volume feature was adjustable for those "extra-loud" school days. The FREEDOM PROCESSOR allows for four maps. P1 is his base map, P2 uses the AUTOSENSITIVITY PROGRAM, P3 ADRO and P4 is the base map on a higher level. She allowed me to download the new maps on my husbands computer key-drive (whatever you call that thing) that he obsessively carries with him, thank God! I like having copies of Jordan's maps just in case.
We said our goodbyes and headed for the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Given that the hospital is a three minute walk from the Tower and I spent a lot of time there breathing during Jordan's surgery, I kind of always have to visit Piazza dei Miracoli (Miracles Square- highly appropriate) every time we go for an audiological visit. Jordan got a foot long hot dog, had the man cut it in half because he only wanted mayonnaise on half of the dog and nothing on the other half and a can of peach tea. I watched all of the Japanese tourists-not many Americans-doing the typical Leaning Tower of Pisa pose where they contort their bodies and arms to make it look like they're holding up the Tower from falling, one of the most hysterical things ever seen and consistently reproduced!



I've become so Italian:)

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

My son sees the audiologist in the first video and she actually usually does the a-ba, a-ga, a-va, a-ta, etc. discrimination tests after a mapping. If he gets a consonant wrong, she adjusts the map accordingly and tries again. If I am remembering correctly, she doesn't usually do the Ling test after a mapping. However, she did do it at the first few mappings after the activation of his second implant to see if he was detecting those frequencies and later discriminating them.

Jodi Cutler Del Dottore said...

Thanks for telling me that...makes me feel a lot better...My audiologist will do testing of sentences and word discrimination, but this Ling Test was totally new to me. Jodi

Rachel said...

You better let me hop on a train and see Pisa when I come over! I also noticed on the map of Italy that you're also close to Siena! You can definitely join me, and I'll be your tour guide! I can give you all the art history facts as I have been studying it at my university.

I'm glad to hear that Jordan's map went well! It's definitely OK to be very involved with his mapping and request the audiologist to do certain things. That's definitely my mother who spends a lot of time researching mapping techniques!

Jodi Cutler Del Dottore said...

RAAAACCCCHHHHELLL!
Have train tix, will travel! I would love a lesson in Art History and Siena is one of my favorite towns, Piazza del Campo is overwhelmingly beautiful. We will go! But, I'm not sure you'll want to leave the beach, because summer in Grosseto is the best time of the year! HAVE AN AMAZING NEW YEAR, I KNOW THAT 2008 WILL BE AN INCREDIBLE YEAR FOR YOU! Btw, your mom was one of those who helped me figure all of this out, so you give her a hug for me!
love,
Jodi

Abbie said...

I am so happy that my video helped you understand the whole process and more importantly, helped Jordan. I am working on a transcription of the video. Just think I worried about posting it because I thought it might have turned people off because it wasn't that "perfect" activation but now that I see that it helps parents understand the process, it is all worth it. May 2008 be your most blessed year :)

Anonymous said...

Click here:
http://www.lingnotes.com/essentials.shtml
to read a sample of a transcript of Daniel Ling explaining the Ling 6 Sound test (it's example 2) The entire transcript is available for a fee.