They really don't warn you about how fast life will go once you have child. I can't believe in a few short days my baby girl will be graduating from Kindergarten and I will have a first grader! She has done exceptionally well in school this year academically, but still needs some work in her social skills.They call her a "natural leader" (read:bossy). Once she can harness the bossy, she will make a terrific leader.
I think the greatest thing was Teagan learning to read this year. She really enjoys reading and its been amazing for the roles to reverse and have her read bed time stories to me. She also really enjoys and does well with Math. It crazy the homework and things the kids are learning in kindergarten. Some things I didnt even learn until middle school. She also completed a research project about Seals. So adorable.
My fears of her hearing loss possibly holding her back have COMPLETELY dissolved. I can tell you 100% this kid does not let her hearing loss stop her in any way shape or form. Her Teacher has followed the IEP and uses Teagan's FM everyday and seats her in the class where she can easily see the teachers face. Of course we are so lucky to have the most amazing teacher (for the deaf) Ms Robin still be on Teagan's team!
It is truly amazing how quickly the time goes from Thanksgiving to Christmas to the New Year, add in a 5 year and new pup and literally life is in hyper speed for over a month with no time to sit down and update. But it was worth every minute.
On December 4th Teagan finally got her new hearing aids. A beautiful tri color Phonak Nadia complete with the new Rodger FM systerm.
This photo does not do this hearing aid any justice it's a beautiful piece of equipment and it fits her personality perfectly. The power of this thing absolutely blows my mind. Teagan is hearing things she has never heard before. It freaked her out a couple times when she heard a new sound she looked up at me and said, "mom, what is that?" and it brings tears to my eyes. Just this evening we were sitting in a crowded restaurant and with a hand over my mouth I did the "ling" sounds and she was able to hear them all by Sh and M. It's just amazing to me.
Unfortunately for Mom and Michael we must now be much more careful about what we say because she's picking up a whole lot more. I was whispering to Michael about a Christmas gift and Teagan perked right up and said "HeliClopter!! Who's getting a HelipClopter" We just looked at her dumbfounded. LOL
We are so very grateful her audiologist was able to get her a new device!!
Our Sweet little Copper came to join us on November 25th 2013 and has been such a joy. We couldn't have dreamed of a better dog. He's so very smart!!! He's picked up commands so fast. When adopting they told us he would run after a ball but could not fetch, well he surprised us all in learning to play fetch in only 15 minutes. He loves to please his people and is so very patient with Teagan who loves to hang on him with hugs. He definitely has it in him to be a service dog, however while we still plan on training I was overwhelmed with the bond Copper and I have. He has inadvertently become a therapy dog for me. My anxiety level has decreased so much since Copper has come into our home. When Copper masters all of his basic training (he is still learning to not pull on his leash and to stay off of counters) We will further his hearing dog training. With the Collie in him he does round Teagan up and he also keeps a very good watch over her. He doesn't like when she is out of his sight while they are out back playing or we are on walks together.
As amazing as Copper is he has had his puppy moments. We came in one day to a floor full of white fluff as he chewed up a couch pillow and Teagan's stuffed animals. This little boy loves to chew. The decision to get Copper was one of the best ones ever.
The Rescue we got him from is even using his story to try and get a grant to help provide the funds for veterinarian care for other pups like him. I hope and pray they get it.
Christmas came in a flash this year and Teagan was greeted with all the magic and wonder that every 5 year old should. Though Santa didn't bring a whole lot she was over joyed with the gifts and the way the whole family was together.
Opening a gift
Flying the Helicopter
Teagan, Gramme, Bella, Grampy and Teddy
Teagan, David, Stephanie, & Kiersten
Teagan, Mommy and my niece Bella
Teagan and Aunt Dee
It was a special day as the whole family gathered at my sister's house for dinner and gifts. I hope to instill in Teagan the real meaning of Christmas. It is most definitely the love and togetherness of family that makes the magic of Christmas happen every year!
So 2014 is finally here. I'm not a big fan of resolutions because I can't stick with them for anything but there are things I am trying to do a little differently this year. Teagan and I have been leaning signs for 4.5 years now. We are learning and improving every day and while my little girl has no problems using signs with people I am often very shy to use basic signs. I have a few customers who are deaf and though I would not be able to have a conversation I could greet them and most likely take most of their order in sign. I however chicken out afraid I'll do something offensive. I am hoping to over come this fear.
I also want to blog more. Really make the time to share what is happening in the crazy world of ours. That is why I started this blog so many years ago. Because when I found out Teagan was hard of hearing I searched the internet for blogs and photos of other children with hearing loss and I wanted to find out what other parents were going through. I started this blog so that maybe another parents could find that though there are difficult and scary times in raising a hard of hearing child its not so different that raising any other child.
This year coming up is going to be a crazy one!!! Teagan will start KINDERGARTEN in the Fall!!! WHAT THE HECK!! Where did the time go?!?! Just yesterday I attended the IU transition meeting. The thought of sitting in a room with a IU member and a 2 or 3 Child Psychologists and someone from her up coming school district was quite over whelming but the meeting went really well. It was pretty painless and short, I only answering a few question (basically confirming what they already knew about her services she receives) and addressing a few of my concerns.
This is all new to me! I have just as much of a hard time dealing with changes as my five year old. from Birth to 3 we had members of her team come directly to the home, from 3 to 4 we had her hearing support teacher come to the house , speech we drove to Haycock for and Special Instruction went to daycare. When she entered preschool all of her team went to her school. It was really hard for me to adjust because I was always their for her therapies. I was able to continue to do what they did with her all week long because I could pay attention to how they were working with her. I'm not sure all of what happens in the school age setting. However what I do know is that her entire team changes again. It was heart breaking to say goodbye to Ms Michelle and a joy to say Hello to Ms Kathy. Both hearing support teachers have made a amazing difference in both of our lives and we hold them both very dear to our hearts. One very comforting piece is that when Teagan enters Kindergarten she will be reunited with Ms Robin. Depending on how far you have been reading our blog Ms. Robin, Teagan and I go back a long time. When Teagan was 6 months old she was the very first hearing support we had.
So Welcome 2014!! I believe it is going to be a wonderful year full of new and interesting things!
Teagan has been a lover of dogs for a long time. She adored Wilbur, our 120lb bloodhound who sadly we had to put down about 9 months ago. And she calls Sox (our 13 year old Miniature Poodle) her brother. Teagan begs and pleads for us to have a baby brother or sister but unfortunately my baby making days are over. I know my girl can get bored at times being an only child and while Sox is a great pet we really feel it would be wonderful to bring in a younger dog who can play hard and long with Teagan. We also would love to try and train a dog to do some service work ( like alerting Teagan to a knock on the door, or doorbell or phone ringing or her name being called in a noisy environment ) After months of thinking long and hard about it we decided it was time to bring in another pet to join our family.
Please meet Kingsley. He is a 31lb Smooth Collie Mix (possible w/ beagle). He is about a year old, a very intelligent and playful dog who loves other dogs and children. After countless emails with Diane and hours of phone calls with Kim (the adoption coordinator) we all are in agreement that this dog will be a wonderful match for our family and we will provide him with his best home. We've decided that along with a new home, he will have a new name. So I am proud to introduce our new family pet as Copper! Copper will be coming to us from a wonderful Non- Profit organization that rescues dogs from high kill shelters in TN.
Copper had a visit with the vet today and is now en route to Pennsylvania . He should be arriving tomorrow evening between 7 and 9 pm.
We are all so anxious and over joyed to meet this sweet dog!!!
Teagan's latest hearing test. Confusing at best.
In just one year this little girl has shot up 4 inches (44inches) and has gained 4.5 lbs (42lbs). She's growing beautifully and very healthy!! She had her repeat hearing test and it looked much better than the previous one! Mild sloping to profound. We retest on November 15 then again in January and then every 3 months from here on out. She should be getting the phonak sky hearing aid. It's really cool and tri colored. We've been upping the sign language dramatically in our family. Signing together has always brought great joy! I'm excited to see how everything will work out. I'm still inn awe every time I look at this kid. She's simply amazing. I'm truly in love with the amount of support we've received during this time. It brought great joy to see how involved and willing Michael and his family are to be a part of this. Making a blended family work is hard work but there it's so much love here. This life, though difficult, is such a blessing.
Just wanted to let you all know Signing time is now available on Netflix!!
Teagan had a wonderful Fifth Birthday Party! Her friends and family made the party so special for her. She loved the pumpkin patch built in the back yard. Monday we'll be heading for her 5 year old well child check. Can't wait to see how much my baby has grown I swear she's grown at least 3 inches this year!
The day before her birthday we got the audiogram and report back from Teagan's hearing test. Unfortunately Teagan did lose more hearing then we initially thought. Teagan is now coming in the moderate to profound ranges in her left ear. Below is a audiogram showing her most recent lose. *its a blank one that i filled out to show what she can and cannot hear.
It's been a week of wonder and research and craziness as I try to wrap my head around my daughter going deaf. I'm (not so patiently) waiting for Tuesday to meet with Melinda (Teagan's audiologist) to find out some much needed information on what comes next for Teagan.
In the mean time we've reached out and met some amazing new people, deaf and hard of hearing kids with CI's and their parents. Whether or not Teagan will continue to wear hearing aids, go completely deaf, get a CI, etc. etc. It's about time she starts have strong role models with hearing loss. And its about time that I start reaching out to other parents who have had to make difficult decisions for their children, and other parents who understand some of the feelings that I have about raising a HOH child.
We've noticed some changes in Teagan's speech and reaction to sounds she would normally hear. It's really hard to see her struggle to hear and say words that she previously has no problems with. She's been so frustrated. What is really fascinating is that she started using some of her signs again and asking for new signs. That makes me happy cause we love learning new signs in the house. :)
As scary as all this is and as weird as this might sound more and more I find joy in this journey.
Testing a new app to blog from my phone. If this works you should be able to see a sweet picture of my little girl and our dog.
The IEP improvement we are pleased with the progress Teagan has been making since she started school.We set some new goals and we all are excited to see what this school year will bring for Teagan.
I am anxiously awaiting the 29th to find out more about Teagan further hearing loss. We will be discussing new amplification options and while she is not a candidate for CI's yet we may be meeting with a CI team just to discuss option if she losses more. I am glad the CI's are off the table for the moment. its something that I've been struggling to wrap my head around.
This weekend will be Teagan's 5th birthday party!!! We're really looking forward to celebrating with friends and family and it looks like her Gramme and Grampy from TN will be able to join us this year!!
I can't believe its been nearly three years since writing in this blog. What a difference 3 years can make. Things have started settling down in our little world. Teagan continues to make huge progress!She's having full on conversations, writing her ABC's spelling her name and MOMMY. She's learned her address and phone number. started some basic math skills, learned to ride a two wheel bike, learned to hit a baseball (and she pretty darn good at it too). She also wears her hearing aid pretty much all waking hours. If you've followed our blog early on your know she was always breaking and refusing to wear them! She learned how to blow out her own birthday candles too (See last post to understand the accomplishment lol) She loves writing and books playing baseball, swimming (she's a little fish like her mama) , and the kid still LOVES music and dancing!!
We moved in with my boyfriend, Michael, about a year ago. He has two daughter in college and Teagan just adores them. We also have 2 dogs, Wilbur a HUGE bloodhound who we had to put down a few months ago, whom Teagan just adored and is still talking about every day. And Sox our crazy phantom poodle whom Teagan has a love/hate relationship with. LOL. It was a little bit of a transition with all new house rules and sharing her mommy with other people but Teagan adores having a house with a back yard, a family , and mostly having a dad figure in her life.
Teagan has learned a kid size bit about where her biological dad is and why he is there. She kept asking and asking about where her dad is and though it broke my heart to have to tell her she doesn't seem nearly as frustrated about things like she did before she knew the truth.
We've visited a lot of new places she had her first taste of crabs in Ocean City Maryland, her first 12 car ride to TN to visit Gramme and Grampy, then she had her first trip to Disney with Gramme and Grampy.
She started school on Sept. 16 2013. Talk about an emotional wreck!! Not her, ME! It was so difficult to put her on the bus. Her teachers are great but very firm. I thought I was pretty firm person until I met her Teacher. I struggled with out first meeting because while we were talking Teagan was trying to show me something and flat out she says, "Teagan your mom and I are talking you are going to have to go play with Ms. Michele" WHAT? HUH? I think it startled both Teagan and myself. Then it looked like it was going to be a nightmare to explain why Teagan needed her FM system but luckily her hearing support teacher Ms Michele was there to kindly yet firmly explain the importance of Teagan having her FM.
The first week was an absolute nightmare. While she was enjoying school she as struggling to adjust to a new routine. She was regressing at home. Not eating, going through crying fits and she even started miss spelling her name. The protective mom was about to yank her right out of preschool! lol I'm glad I didn't because she adjusted to her new routine in about a week and is doing so well!!!
Teagan just went in for a hearing test on Sept. 30th and it looks like she has lost more hearing in her left hear. She will be getting a new, more powerful hearing aid, The Phonak Nadia , which is a really good hearing aid from what I am reading. She choose a pretty purple one this time. a year ago she also started choosing her own colors for her ear mold. I'm glad that I did the clears until she was old enough to choose her own because her face just lit up and she was so excited when she was able to make those choices on her own. Her first choice was clear with purple and pink. She got mad one day and chewed it up. So i made her get a basic clear with some pink sparkles as a punishment.
This year she got to chose again and in a couple of weeks her white, blue and pink with purple sparkles mold should be arriving! Its gonna look great with her new addie.
Teagan will be going back for another hearing test on October 29th, I think mostly to confirm the information from this test.
So there you have the BIG update. I've really missed writing about Teagan's life. I read back from the beginning and laughed and cried and relived moments of Teagan's life. I wish I never would have stopped but as all parents well know Life Happens and Life with a active toddler is hectic. But now sadly, excitedly, and proudly I am a mom to a Preschooler and while life is just as hectic if not more I know the importance of never missing a moment, of making time to document the events of your child life, it goes by incredibly fast and years from now I want to go back and relieve all these moments, I want Teagan to be able to read this and now just how amazing she is and always has been. Signing out for now- Amanda