the things they don't tell you

There are a few things "they" don't tell you when you have a sick child who happens to also be deaf.
When your deaf child has her CI (cochlear implant) off and wakes in the evening vomiting and calls for you, she can't hear you coming to help her.
 When she wakes up at 11 pm in a dash to the toilet, she doesn't hear you race in behind her...she might feel the floor vibrate though.
"They" don't tell you, how you can not speak soothing words while they are vomiting.  Heck, you can't even sign while you are holding hair back with one hand and rubbing a back with the other.
 "They" don't tell you that if you don't have the signs for diarrhea, vomit and fever in your regular sloppy signing that you will need to get the implant out of the drying kit and replace the battery and put the whole dang contraption back on your child's head just so you can explain what the heck is going on with her poor little body. 
 "They" don't tell you that if you leave that BTE (behind the ear) on your daughter's ear you run the risk of having it end up in the bucket. 
 (No, this did not happen but it could.) 
"They" don't tell you how hard it is to watch your sick gal and not be able to ease her discomfort with your words.
 "They" can't tell you because most of the "they's" are not parents of deaf kids. 
So, this sounds like a pity party but it's not.
  I have had a rough day.  
Hell, a rough week.  
I am solo parenting this weekend, which makes the challenge all that more tough. However, I cling to the fact that mercies are new every morning and even though my deaf child, my beloved daughter, can not hear my words of comfort, she knows I am there, beside her, rubbing her back, putting her in the shower, changing her bedding and fetching her water. 
She knows because the "I love you"  sign is imprinted on her brain and because love is love, whether it is written, spoken or signed or all of the above.
 Tonight, I am reminded, once again, of my Heavenly Father,  because sometimes life seems like vomit and even though I can not hear, because I lack faith, (or whatever it may be) God is still there right beside me, hemming me in before and behind, gently rubbing my back and fetching my water.
What "they" don't tell you is that having a deaf child is a blessing and deafness can teach lessons that may not otherwise be taught.
Tonight's lesson is just one of many.


  1. Ugggh Nicole - I am sorry you have all been sick and I can't imagine how hard that is for both you and Dels. ((Hugs))
    I am flying solo this week and have had the vomiting child thing too - it's not fun!
    "Honey...come home!!!!"

  2. Delia (& Jude) are blessed to have had God choose YOU to be their mom. He knew all these things, and I cry as I read your blog this morning. May His loving arms encircle you this weekend, Nicole, and may Delia know that you were saying all those things, even if she couldn't hear it in her ears, but knew then in her heart.

  3. oh honey ((hugs)) I know that my mom always said that god made her stronger to raise a handicapped child (my brother was bedridden from 7 until he died at 13). So I know how very strong you are. I wish I had better words but...I'm always a good listener.

  4. It has been a rough. Satan is clearly trying to discourage you and in the midst of this Job-esque marathon of trials you just keep going back to truth & thankfulness. Women - you are gaining character by the mile right now. And those kids are witnessing grace under fire. We've got your back - praying you through today.

  5. Not all love and comfort is conveyed in words - often words fall short, and touch and presence speak volumes more. And yet, when we are robbed of words, we feel their lack and feel our own inadequacy to communicate. You see this more startlingly than most of us, Nicole, and feel in a unique way how we, as moms, cannot always be everything that we think we should be for our kids. g

  6. as i was reading this, i was thinking of two things: one how hard it was when monrovia was a newborn and would scream and scream. i would be rocking her, bouncing her, and speaking words of love to her, even though she couldn't hear me. i felt so helpless, and every book i looked in was written to soothe a hearing child. all my friends who had experienced similar things had hearing children.

    the second was similar to your closing words: how in my hardest moments, of which this year has held many, when i can't "hear" God, that I know He still loves me. i'd never thought about that until reading this post- and how similar my relationship with god is to those moments at night, or when monrovia's ci's are off and she can't hear me but she knows i am there, and that i am the same mom that loves her whether she can hear my voice or not.


  7. Here via Susannah's - our daughters are at the same oral school for the deaf.

    This post is so, so lovely, Nicole. The image of God rubbing my back and fetching my water when life is ick is beautiful and comforting to me. Thank you for sharing your words.

    And I sure hope your sweet Delia is feeling better - and that you are, too, after a long week.


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