Today, everyone in the house got up early, which NONE of us are used to right now. We left in time to drop off the big kids at before school care right as it opened and Jaden soon after that. Darby and Carter were a tremendous help this morning and knew how important it was that I leave on time. They were just great.
Jack and I then took off for Palo Alto and the California Ear Institute (CEI). About a half hour into our trip, I had handed Jack all the toys in my little magic bag for him to hurl on the floor of the car. He was ready to be out already. So, I started on the food. This kid can put away the crackers, let me tell you. It looks like a toss up between what actually made it into the belly and what is all over my car - but it made him happy for a while! Then, he was ready to be out of the car. We listened to music, which he likes to have up REALLY LOUD (note to self - get a new kid music CD). Then, a general meltdown ensued followed by a nap for the last 30 minutes of our drive. Three hours after leaving Sacramento and we were at the CEI office. There is only one good thing that can be said about this and all of our future trips to Palo Alto and it can be said in 3 words: CAR POOL LANE.
Jack then proceeded to charm the office staff and then amaze his audiologists. They performed a bone conduction hearing test on Jack. He sat in my lap in a little booth with a device attached to his head that vibrated sounds on his skull. He turned immediately when the first sound was made and I nearly cried. I don't consider myself to usually be a very emotional person, but God has answered some prayers and it touched my heart to see Jack hear so clearly. Jack has at least one functioning cochlea and maybe two. He heard everything in all frequencies down to 10 decibels. He was very cooperative and this will save us from having to sedate him for further tests. It is clear that a bone conduction hearing aid will help him a lot.
We then went to lunch. I ate some soup, while Jack wondered why I was trying to feed him after he just ate ten pounds of crackers. We then walked around the office area and had all kinds of fun walking along the planters, looking at spiders and ants (and smashing a few)and peering at people who were in the offices. He made many friends (none of them were bugs, though).
Here are some pictures of Jack picking me some flowers. Hard to tell if he is trying to be sweet or mischievous - huh?
We then went to meet with Dr. Choe and Dr. Roberson. What wonderful people these doctors are along with their entire staff. We agreed that there is no urgency for further testing since we know the BAHA (a brand of bone conduction hearing aid) will help him tremendously. We will start with this and some speech therapy and will go from there. So, our next appointment for the BAHA fitting will be on 12/29/06.
Then, Jack and I loaded up for the drive home. By this time, I was out of food and I think Jack's belly was out of room. After some very persistent and diligent tugging on the straps that trapped him, Jack fell asleep. A long day for a precious little boy and a day I will not soon forget.