My child participates in, and loves, musical theatre class. Why do I find that statement bizarre?
Why did I never imagine that I would say that about my youngest child?
I am a wife and mother of four children. Each child connected by genetics, similar physical characteristics, similar likes/dislikes, talents. Each child is also unique; each pregnancy, birth, personality, strengths, weakness, etc. My connection to each is unique, as are my worries for each. It is difficult not to compare each child to the other in relation to development, abilities or accomplishments. It became especially difficult with the arrival of our youngest child.
She came into this world like a true diva, demanding center stage and all eyes on her. She did not enter quietly. I knew, in that moment, that my world had instantly changed. However, not in the way you might think. She was born with a condition called Congenital Hypothyroidism and Bilateral Sensorineural Hearing Loss. My first thought was, how will she hear me sing to her or say “I love you”? These thoughts were quickly replaced with, I will let her “feel” me sing by placing her hand on my throat or chest and I will learn sign language so she can see me say “I love you”. Music has always been important to me and I share that love of music with her all of the time. I had accepted that she may not experience music the same as I do. I accepted many things I never dreamt that she would do.
My daughter, since the first day she drew breath, has proved me wrong and continues to amaze me daily. If she hears a tune or melody that she likes she is humming immediately and will come through the door humming and asking “Mom! Do you know this song?” She wants to know the name of the song and then searches for it on the internet to locate lyrics and teaches herself the song. This same scenario happening day after day. Her hearing loss makes this difficult as it has been progressive and speech sounds are difficult for her to understand. She does not complain but persists to enjoy each song. She loves ALL MUSIC! Classical, Jazz, Rock, Pop, Hip Hop, Country and her favorite…. 70’s. I will admit that this fact alone has turned me to mush as the 70’s are my favorite also.
We continue to see multiple doctors and have many ups and downs medically. She continues to struggle with fitting into a world that isn’t accessible all of the time. I continue to find support from other mother’s in similar situations that offer their experiences, support and ideas. I pray that she keeps proving to me that I should never sit back and accept anything. I hope she keeps reaching for the stars and singing every step of the way. I hope she keeps teaching me lessons of courage and love. She has definitely changed my world…. In an instant.