You Think You See, But You Have No Idea

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Jasper, Alabama, United States

Friday, September 17, 2010

IEP time again...

Its simple really.
Being 7 is hard. Being 7 with a hearing loss is even harder.
Realizing that you don't hear what typical hearing people hear is hard. Realizing this when your 7, is nearly impossible.
Accepting when someone tells you what you heard is incorrect is difficult. Accepting this when your 7 isn't going to happen.
When your 7 you think the world revolves around you. When your 7 with a hearing loss, your disability is often misunderstood by the world.
At 7 your voice is small, your understanding is limited, and your ability to overcome is left in the hands of those closes to you.
Being the mother of a child with a hearing loss is hard. Being the mother, who was a hearing impaired child herself, looking into the eyes of your HOH child and understanding the tears and the struggles is even harder.
Sometimes I think it would be so much easier if I didn't understand how much it all mattered. I wish I thought that my HOH child making a 79 on a spelling test where no special accommodations were made for him was good. I wish I thought if my HOH childs teacher wrote notes that contain phrases such as: "If he had paid attention, I think he would have done better." or "he was working while I was giving directions." or "we read the story aloud together." meant just that. But it doesn't. For a HOH child it means EVERYTHING BUT THAT. It means he's hard of hearing. It means that he didn't know you were giving directions, it means he doesn't understand that he cant color while your going over directions, it means you read a story aloud in a noisy class room to a group of noisy 7 year olds and expected my child who can't hear well to follow and understand that story. It means YOU dont understand. All these things only mean that my child who can not hear well wasn't given the same opportunities as that of his hearing peers. These things only make me angry, because I know. I know how hard it is to be in a noisy class room with a soft spoken teacher and have that teacher blame you for naturally having the mind of a 7 year old. I know what its like to be considered "lazy" and "easily distracted" when thats not the case at all. In fact what is really going on is quite simple. Hard of hearing children adapt to their worlds, and have everyone convinced that they understand more than they really do. So. Actually the teachers don't realize they are the ones who are lazy, by not giving that little bit of extra thought. They also don't realize they are easily distracted by the fact that a child wearing hearing aids isn't a child that can hear. Hes a child with hearing aids.
HOH children don't know their limitations, they have to be given the opportunity to hear like their classmates. So! Before Cam's teachers can write such notes and I can except such grades, I have to know that he was given a chance. A chance, that's all I ask. Seems like a simple request to me.