I have been told since Kellan was a baby he would never fit in. Once we received his diagnosis and communication choices needed to be made, the opinions of those representing intervention for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing are loud. The hearing community makes it clear that amplification and technology would be his only hope in a hearing world. The Deaf community makes it clear I have no business making that choice for my baby and he would never be included in Deaf culture despite the fact he is profoundly deaf. If we chose total communication, using both listening/spoken language and ASL, he would never find himself accepted in either community. It seems deaf kids do not have the same abilities to learn multiple languages as their hearing counterparts or so it is represented. I remember finally shaking my head and responding in the only mature, responsible manner I could muster: Whatever.
In the last year, we have been confronted with the reality of the social component to Kellan’s development. When you are constantly being told your child is a distraction and an interruption there comes a point in time you start believing the lies. Your baby will never fit in. I’ve wrestled with these thoughts the last few months and have found myself coming back to: Whatever. I should also share it is one of my favorite ASL signs. I usually sign it while shaking my head and rolling my eyes because it’s a legit part of the language and I choose to take full advantage of it.
Whatever is true: my baby is a good and perfect gift.
Whatever is noble: when he does communicate in whatever manner he chooses, I want him to speak truth in love and that has less to do with hearing ears and more to do with a hearing heart.
Whatever is right: what works for my son and our family in terms of communicating is what makes the choice right.
Whatever is pure: he is a little boy that has yet to be affected by the opinions of others.
Whatever is commendable: he is the hardest working little dude I have ever met.
There are always choices. I’m going to choose to think about all the things worthy of praise.
He deserves that from his mama!