Monday, August 2, 2010

Prisha makes phone conversation

    Yesterday I was in conversation with parents who happen to discover that the child they adopted a month ago was hearing impaired.The conversation lasted about 2 hours over Skype call and since it was on loudspeaker and video, the conversation was audible to all in the house.Prisha was busy with her jobs and I thought she was not aware of what was happening.After about an hour and half, she told her dad "Dad ask mumma to stop talking, she talks so much".I found it really amusing.
 Phone made from razor packaging
     The conversation was all about this new development and so is normally very draining as far as my energy is concerned.It does drain me out emotionally as you are trying your best to share knowledge and give the best guidance to the family so they do not fall into traps of wrong doctors who have their materialistic gains in mind.The afternoon saw us connecting with another friend whose cochlear implant has major issues due to being wrongly implanted and now depends more on the other ear which works on hearing aids.Fortunately my friend was very eager to help the new parent as they live in the same city.And we exchanged notes on how best to get her the best help possible.the phone played such an important part the whole day that I did not realize that though Prisha looked totally lost in her own world ,,she must be listening to my talks as the sounds are falling on her ears and she is very auditorily trained.
     Since I was feeling a bit claustrophobic being at home all day on the sofa, we decided to go out for a drive and see a bit more of the country side in the area we live.As we set out, I was enjoying the nice cool breeze, a bit cloudy sky,( I love it as India is mostly sunny except the monsoons 2-3 months a year), the empty roads on a sunday evening and the drive, I heard Prisha at the back pick up her play phone made from another waste packaging. She started to keep chatting while my husband and I kept our conversation going ,when suddenly her conversation caught me and we stopped talking. She was talking to her friend named "Simiya" ,a name she invented on her own and was busy taking about her.She asked about her baby and her husband and was making such a REAL conversation that we were out of our wits. I really wished I had my handycam.Then she realised we stopped talking and she said," mumma, I am talking to my friend Simiya, her husband's name is Sigga and the baby's name is Saphiya". I was amazed at her new names that she had invented.We ignored her as we wanted to hear more of it, while we giggled behind our seats.She then called up another friend and said,"Hi, how are you, Ooooo, you are getting married, wow, then you will get a baby!!"and she went on.My God!! We were holding our tummy and laughing at her real conversation.Then after a bit more of chatting, she fixed a date with her friend to meet her at home as it was her birthday party in the evening.She is not too fond of going out for a drive, I have realized and is mostly then busy with her role plays and her phones or she sleeps off. Then started her rants of wanting to go home as she had to dress up to go to the birthday party. When I said we were far from home, she said,"I am sleeping and you wake me up when we reach home and remind me I have to talk to Simiya as we are late for the party" .We settled on this note and she dozed off.The moment I reached home and I woke her up, she said "Oh yes, I have to talk to Simiya". I was so amazed at the whole chain of event.She was conversing like us, introducing the way I was introducing my family to them and making up her own situations and conversations around family, friend and baby sleeping and wedding etc.
       I thought about it later and realized the importance of her being so auditorily trained. She was so tuned to sounds around her with all kinds of background sounds included, as in India there is plenty of noise in the city, that she is used to picking up voices over noises involuntarily. I thought that while I chat away on phone etc, she may be ignoring the sounds as it is natural for the hearing impaired to ignore sounds and talks around them.A lot of such people are used to talking only when spoken too and in the process miss out on what is happening around them.They miss the talks between other friends, or people talking together as they find it hard to concentrate on others' conversation.But since she is auditorily trained, she pays attention to sounds.As the sounds fall on her ears while she does her things, her brain is retaining the happenings around her and she reproduces similar things later.As the sounds fall on her ears, she keeps herself abreast to things happening around.I am so glad as this brings her closer to normalcy and we feel happy that with great speech therapy , we are able to lead quite a normal lives ourselves.Many people tell me this that she is so normal with her interaction that they feel she is not hearing impaired.I thank God and my loving speech therapist Alaka Hudlikar, who has made this so possible.And now this is so close to my heart, that anyone who is in a situation like this, I am all out to help them out.