Make sure to scroll down for the some pics.
I meant to blog this yesterday but we had such a fun packed adventurous (more on that later) day I didn't have the time or energy.
It was one year ago on June 21st the Lawrence family had one of the hardest days of their lives. Cormac had his blateral Cochlear Implant Surgery on June 21, 2007. Easy date to remember since it's Trisha' birthday. We then had the long 3 week wait until activation. It was the longest day of my life (even longer than the day the boys were born. That only took 45 minutes) Cormac's surgery took almost 7 hours. Frank and I just waited and waited. One is never so frightened as to hand over your child for surgery. Especially, when it involves drilling in the head. I remember walking him back to the OR and holding him. Praying it would all be OK. It just had to be OK. I could never forgive myself if it wasn't OK. Frank said I could only go in and hold him if I promised not to let him see me cry before he was sedated. I put on the happiest face I could muster and held that little boy until his eyes closed. At that point all bets were off. I lost it completely but the nurse was kind enough to tell Frank I didn't cry until he was asleep.
We then waited the seven hours until we could see him. When we went into recovery I was not prepared for what I saw. Cormac was so swollen he couldn't open his eyes. So at this point he couldn't see or hear. My heart just broke and I immediately went to hold him. At first they wouldn't let me but at Frank's insistance they quickly handed him to me. He laid on my chest and slept for the next 2 hours. Even though he couldn't see or hear he KNEW it was me and I would take care of him.
We were moved out of recovery and into his room for the night. We did not have the best experience with nursing care. They would only let me stay and not Frank. Basically, I sat in a chair with Cormac on my chest for 12 hours. No one came in to check on us. I couldn't use the bathroom because I wouldn't leave him alone. It was a horrible night. The nurse call button I pushed all night apparently wasn't a clue enought I needed help. ANyway, I finally carried Cormac and pushed his IV pole into a nurses meeting and demanded someone pay some attention to us.
We were home within about 24 hours. His recovery time was much shorter than one would think. I do remember he wanted to stay outside the next day. He just wanted to sit in the grass. He looked like Princess Leah with the bandages on his head.
Cormac had just started walking before his surgery. But the day after he walked around the hospital pushing his IV pole. He has been running ever since.
While it was one of the hardest days in my life I now know the impact that day has had on our lives. As the years progress the impact will be greater and greater. Cormac has the sweetest, softest voice you have ever heard. He loves to talk and listen and learn. He is your typical 2 year old. He says "I love you". He makes jokes. He gets jokes. Today he was roaring like a lion at the zoo and howling like a wolf. He told me he wanted "more yellow school bus". All because of his Cochlear Implants. He is no longer on the outside looking in. Yes, he is still deaf and will always be deaf. Yes, he will have some struggles in his life his hearing peers might not have but I think this will only make him stronger. Cormac has a speciall purpose in life. I strongly believe this in my heart. I can't wait to see what this purpose turns out to be. I think Cormac will somehow change the world. Or at least change the parts he come into contact with in his lifetime. Each day he educates strangers when they see him. Just the other day someone said to me "what are those on his head?" I said "he is deaf and has bilateral cochlear implants". She says "but wait, he talks just like the other two". I say "exactly. That was the hope". I think Ciaran and Colin are better for having Cormac as a brother. They will learn not all people are born the same but it doesn't mean they are any less "normal" Anything is possible. They are constant speech models for Cormac. They are his best friends and they will always take care of each other. They are the first to try and put his "ears" back on when one falls off. Ciaran can find a lost magnet in seconds. (I think this is because he usually is responsible for taking it off in the first place!)
I have lost count of the number of words Cormac says and understands. I am supposed t still be tracking this but when the numbers get so high it's hard to remember them all! We have out one year evalualtion next month.
This year has flown by so quickly. So much has happened. I know I have never been so certain we made the right choice for our son.
Cormac heads to the hospital. This was his first time in Frank's car
In his hopital gown waiting
This is what he looked like after surgery. He was NOT sleeping. He literally could not open his eyes for 12 hours
The next day on our front lawn. Happy as can be.