Our daughter Makayla was born perfectly healthy on April 5th, 2014, passing all of the usual newborn screenings without issue. From day one, her personality shone through. She was strong-willed and had a smile that would light up her eyes before her mouth even showed a hint of joy. But over the next 3 months, Makayla wasn’t eating well and wasn’t gaining enough weight. Our pediatrician referred us to Dr. Elizabeth Hait, a gastroenterologist at Boston Children’s Hospital. Dr. Hait would change Makayla’s formula multiple times and put her on medication for her acid reflux. Her pediatrician also tested her for a milk allergy, since her brother had one as an infant, but it was negative. It was recommended Makayla have an upper GI to make sure everything was anatomically correct.
The technician suggested everything looked good, so we left feeling that Makayla was perfectly normal. But a call from her doctor that afternoon turned our world upside down. …
Before her son’s first birthday, Xi began to worry that something was wrong. “Bosyn was only around a year old, but I could tell he was very distracted — he wouldn’t look up when a phone rang or when a character in a movie yelled,” recalls Xi. “He would respond more to bright lights or colors than to sounds.”
The nine months following his second birthday were filled with appointments, inconclusive hearing tests and pediatricians dismissing Xi’s worries because she was a first-time parent.
But Xi couldn’t shake the feeling that something was wrong. …
Editor’s note: The thing about clichés is sometime they are just spot on. “It’s small world after all,” sprung to mind when I heard about how hearing-restoration researcher Jeffrey Holt, PhD, met Roisin Morgan, an Irish toddler with hearing loss, on an Aer Lingus flight from Dublin to Boston. Read Holt’s recount of their meeting, and watch the reunion video.
On Dec. 16, 2015, as I boarded my flight from Dublin to Boston, there was a family with a three-year-old daughter. I noticed the little girl had bilateral cochlear implants.
As the family made their way to their seats, I noticed one implant had become dislodged and was dangling from the little girl’s ear. But it was a crowded plane, and before I could intervene, they were whisked away among a crowd of busy holiday travelers, anxious to be on their way.
Five minutes later, a voice came over the airplane public announcement system and announced a passenger had lost a hearing device and asked other passengers to keep an eye out for the missing device.