I have been hesitant to write anything on our GBYS blog in the two years we have had it up and running. I have been thinking and analyzing what exactly I was hesitant about. I think it has to do with my sense of vulnerability. I love to talk and carry on conversations and I am not afraid of opening up with people. However, putting my thoughts and feelings out there for anyone to see is a little intimidating.
If I am being completely honest with myself, I would admit that there is a bigger reason. And that has to do with the stage of parenting I am currently in. Parenting teens...yikes! Actually, it has been very rewarding watching these little babies of mine grow into their own unique individuals (despite the moodiness and typical teenage ways!). This is the real hesitation of blogging; I have to be careful not to cross the line of what is me and what is them. My son would not mind me sharing that he has severe hearing loss that he wears two hearing aids and that he was diagnosed at age 4. He would not mind me sharing that he is a sophomore in high school that he is bright but does not always feel like studying and doing homework. He would not mind me bragging on him a bit that he is a pretty good baseball player and played on JV and Varsity this year and is now playing on a travel summer team. OK, OK, he probably would mind me bragging on him! But he is no longer a child and I don’t think it is fair to share the struggles he has had due to his hearing loss. It is too personal to share his feelings, fears and challenges of being a teen with hearing loss. He is a separate individual from me and that is his “stuff” to share with whoever he chooses, when and if he chooses.
As all mothers experience, it’s sometimes hard to let go of our little ones and it can be difficult to not always be in charge and to realize that you no longer can or should be making all decisions for them. Or to remember to let them do things for themselves even if they make mistakes. It’s such a strong urge to protect our kiddos- especially if they have hearing loss. (Besides having my almost 16 year old son and another 8 year old son, I also have a daughter leaving for her freshman year in college so the struggle has been very real for me lately!!)
So how can I blog about hearing loss without stepping in to my son’s personal territory? That is what I have been thinking on before sitting to write this. I can go on about my fears of letting my son go out into the world without me there to protect him- what if someone doesn’t realize he can’t hear them very well? What if he loses his hearing aid or something isn’t working and he lives too far away for me to take care of it? What if he takes off his hearing aids at night and doesn’t hear something going on while he is sleeping? The list goes on and on… But, honestly, it doesn’t matter if a child has hearing loss or not, I believe mothers will always worry about letting their children go. Letting go is the next step in my parenthood and, although difficult at times, it is also exciting and fun to see the people they are becoming. So this blog is not about my hard of hearing child and his successes in spite of his hearing loss; this blog is about me and the present day experience of watching my little boy grow up…
Parent Guide, Georgia Hands & Voices Guide By Your Side Program