THE SHADDOX BOYS
Jacob and Elijah Shaddox are brothers. They live with their mom, Mary, who is the writer of this blog. Jacob is 19 and is now four inches taller than his mom! He also has ADHD and gorgeous red hair. He is a freshman at a technical college studying computer maintenance. Elijah is 15! He is in 9th grade and he is not in ROTC at his high school. He also had red hair, but it is lighter and not as thick as his brother's hair. He is hearing impaired(auditory neuropathy) and wears two cochlear implants. He also has tourette syndrome, ADHD, OCD and anxiety! Mary just started her 25th year as a teacher of the deaf. She is also in her last semester of graduate school to be a diagnostician! She will graduate in December of 2015!
Sunday, September 19, 2010
It has been nine years since Elijah got his first cochlear implant and I am still amazed at the technology. He got his second cochlear implant about six years ago. He only had 18 months of his life without at least one cochlear implant.
What amazes me is how well he does with them! He can hear a whisper across a room. Last night, he was on the computer with his back to the TV. He was very focused on his computer game, but I noticed him sort of dancing to the music from the TV commercial. He was just a grinning and turned around to see what was on the TV. He is able to HEAR background sounds and react to them. He can pull that background sound OUT of the sound he is focused on. Some may not get how COOL that is, but it is cool.
I have also noticed that he has the ability to over hear conversations. He can be focused on something and then hear part of a conversation. He will then say something like, "what are you talking about" or just join the conversation. He hears very well in the car with background noise. He is also to the point where he incidentally learning new vocabulary as well as idioms.
As a teacher of the deaf, I know how far Elijah has come. I work daily with students who are on this same journey. Some are ahead of Elijah and others behind, but they are on their own personal journey. All of the hard work I put forth so many years ago has paid off. There is still much work to be done and there always will be, but it is so much easier now.
I am amazed that I can still be amazed. You would think that the thrill of his hearing would wear off with the passage of time, but it hasn't. I still marvel at it daily!