Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Bionic Ear

I have seen my middle son be taken off to surgery more times than I care to remember.  The first time was when he was only 6 weeks old (for pyloric stenosis), then there have been multiple sets of ear tubes and 4 more surgeries to try and get rid of the cholesteatoma (cyst) in his right ear.  If you can believe it, he's actually had more surgeries than his sister.

We are now finding ourselves facing a 5th surgery on his ear.  Over the past week we have found out that his hearing is the worst it has ever been.  He has severe conductive hearing loss in his right ear.  Doctors still think they can fix all this, but to be perfectly honest, after dealing with it for 3+ years now, we are disappointed and frustrated to say the least. 

Jacob's ear is definitely a complicated case that doesn't play by any of the traditional rules.  We know his hearing will never be in the normal ranges in that ear, but right now he can't hear anything at normal conversation levels.  You literally have to be yelling at him for him to be able to hear you.  Now he hides it well because thankfully his hearing is normal in the left ear, but if you are standing behind him, to his right or if there is any background noise my boy can't even hear me calling his name.

Just this week I have seen the first signs from Jacob that he too has had enough.  This kid that has endured all these surgeries along with 4-6 week recoveries in which any and all activity is completely out of the question has done so with no complaints and an amazing attitude.  Even last week, when we received the news that the latest surgery was unsuccessful and his hearing is at an all time low, he saw tears in my eyes and he said, "What's wrong mama?" My response was that I just want this to all be fixed for him that I don't want him to have any more surgeries, or be in pain or struggle anymore with his hearing.  His response to me was, "it's alright mama, I'm ok with it." 

This week, however, has brought a whole new set of challenges.  Seeing him emotional over possibly needing a hearing aid while at the same time wondering if kids at school will make fun of him has broken my heart.  He is so kind toward others and it just kills me to think that someone would say something unkind to him, even though I know that's a real possibility.  

We are all so incredibly frustrated and just sick to our stomachs at the thought of another surgery for Jacob and another 6 weeks of no activity.  He just got off restrictions from his last surgery a month ago.  This is a big deal to him, so it's a big deal to us.  Praying for his heart, his character and just the way he handles this whole situation that God would be glorified.  It's such a difficult thing to have to deal with at such a young age, but we know God is in control and has a plan and a calling on Jacob's life.

We appreciate your continued prayers.

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