Sunday, March 28, 2010

What brothers are for

Taking advantage of the beautiful weather that we are having, Chance got to spend the day at the park with siblings and friends from out of town.

It was a big park and Chance enjoyed being able to explore the area and took a walk around a little pond looking for fish and other critters that may live there.

Next to the pond was a good sized hill, and as every kid instictively knows, if there is a hill, you should somersault down it as fast as you can go. Chance's brother led the way, veering off to the right a little, but all in all, he made a successful run down the hill going end over end. Chance watched his brother, and then began his own descent down the hill. His dad and I sat watching at the bottom of the hill, remembering back to days of yore when we too looked at a hill and our first thought was to fling our bodies down the hill end over end.

As Chance began his descent veering slightly to the right, his dad turned to me and said, "His implants are going to pop off." As if on cue, we watched as Chance, stopped mid roll and headed back up the hill, his nose in the grass looking for his implant. We were just getting ready to call out to Chance to tell him to put his implants in his pocket until he was at the bottom of the hill, when Chance's brother appeared at his side. He held out his hands for the implants and Chance handed them over to him. Chance's brother then ran with the implants to the bottom of the hill where Chance was successfully reunited with them when his run was over.
Thank goodness for brothers. What would we do with out them?

Monday, March 22, 2010

Neck kisses

We were driving down the freeway the other night, when Chance's little brother started talking about a birthday party that he had recently attended. The party had been for a little girl so Chance's brother was talking about what he gave her for a present.

Suddenly, I hear Chance from the back seat say, "A WHAT?" So I repeated what his brother had said.

After several more attempts by both me and Chance's brother to tell him what the present was, I turned off the radio and told Chance, "HE GAVE HER A NECKLACE."

"OH!" Chance said, "I thought you said, HE GAVE HER A NECK KISS AND I WAS LIKE, WHAT THE HECK!"

Then, with as much seriousness as I could muster, I said, "Yes, Chance. From now on, when any of you go a to girl's birthday party, you are giving neck kisses for a present. That is what we are giving out this year for birthdays. "

There was silence from the back seat and then Chance in a startled voice says,"WHAT? ARE YOU KIDDING ME?"

Apparently at age 9, giving a girl a neck kiss is a really bad thing.

"NO WAY!" Chance said with complete conviction.

So, if you are a girl, and you are having a birthday party and Chance does not come, it is because he is deathly afraid of giving you a neck kiss. Don't take it personally.

The funeral

Last week one of Chance's really good little friends lost her dad to a sudden heart attack. Chance and this little girl started out in preschool together and it has just been this year that they not been in the same class. She is deaf as well and wears an implant. Chance has not seen her for a while since they are not in the same class this year, but when they were reunited, it was as if they had never been parted.

We were at the viewing waiting in line when Chance cocked his head and said,"I hear her somewhere around here!" I could hear her too and was looking around to find her.

I wasn't sure how she would be feeling since she was at her own dad's viewing, and I wasn't sure how Chance would be feeling either once we got to the front of the line. When they saw each other, they hugged and then Chance was whisked away from me. She introduced him to her aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents. She led him to the many displays around the room that depicted aspects of her dad's life. By the time I got to the front of the line, I was being introduced as Chance's mom. Some of the family expressed that they were grateful that Chance was there to be with his friend.
The most touching moment came when I watched the two of them at the casket, both peering down at a man that Chance had spent time with as he played at his friends house through the years.

"It's kind of sad." She said to Chance.

"Yeah." Chance replied.

"He looks different huh?" She asked

"Yeah, he does look different." Chance responded.

They both sat there and looked in the casket for another few seconds and then they were off again, arms linked.

I was glad that Chance was able to be with his little friend during such a difficult time. I was also very touched as I realized that these two kids who had started out together in a preschool where they were literally learning how to talk and express themselves, were now going around the room talking to people as Chance was introduced to all of the relatives. We ended up staying until the end of the viewing as Chance and his little friend were inseperable.

She kept asking if we were coming to the funeral. She was going to play a piano piece and wanted Chance to be there. I asked Chance when we got to the van if he wanted to attend the funeral and he said that he did. We went to the funeral and we listened as a great man was given his last respects.

We know at our house the dedication that it takes to help a child learn to hear and this man and his wife have done a great job with their little daughter. When their insurance company would not pay for the implant, they started fund raising for the money themselves so that their daugter would have the opportunity to hear. May he rest in peace.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Dad will be so embarrassed of me!

"Dad will be so embarrassed of me!" I had just found Chance leaning up against a wall where he was panting for breath.

We were not at home and Chance had been dashing around with a friend, so my first thought was to panic a little inside.

Oh dear. If daddy who was not present was going to be embarrassed of him, what should I be seeing as I was the parent in charge at the moment?

I could not see any obvious sign of misconduct and nothing looked broken.

"Embarrassed of you?" I asked getting ready to tell Chance that the term was,"embarrassed by me, not embarrassed of me."

"Ya! Because of I have Dove chocolate!"

That would explain the dark substance in Chance's mouth.

Dove chocolate happens to be one of Chance's dad's favorite foods. Infact, Chance's dad thinks chocloate is a food group, but I digress.

"Daddy will be JEALOUS of you? I offered.

"Ya!" Chance said grinning. And daddy was JEALOUS of him:)

Sunday, March 14, 2010

It sounds like a good song....

We were playing a new CD in the kitchen when Chance commented that he wished he could understand the words to the song because it sounded like it was a nice song." I just don't understand what it is saying."

"You don't hear the words?" I asked him.

"Some of them I do, but some of them I don't, he responded.

"It is a nice song, maybe we'll have to put this song on your ipod so you can learn the words. I told him.
Chance shook his head in the affirmative. "Yes. The music sounds really nice and I want to know the words too."

I was impressed that Chance thought the song was nice. He was getting the melody, just not all of the words. It is saying a lot about Chance's hearing abilities when he hears things off in the background. Whatever background noises he picks up has to compete with his baby sister learning to chatter or crying; his other siblings talking, singing or playing; and whatever noises me and his dad may make as we go about our daily business. Not to mention the beeping of the microwave, the dishwasher, and other household noises. So the fact that he could hear enough to know he liked the melody of the song is incredible. With all of the activity in our house on a daily basis, is it any wonder Chance could not make out the words:)

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Cooties

Chance and I were enjoying a good read in the book,"Chicken Soup for the Kids Soul," when the concept of cooties came up. The story was talking about how in the 2nd grade, the author found out that girls have cooties. I turned to Chance and asked him if he knew what cooties were. He screwed up his face and said,"Cooties? What are cooties?!"

Ah, my innocent little boy. Apparently this hearing loss of yours has denied you of knowing one of life's worst kept secrets: boys and girls acquire cooties at a certain age. No one can exactly describe what cooties are, but everyone has known several people that have them.

Have you ever tried to explain what cooties are to someone else? I kind of just figured my kids would just 'know' when the time was right in their lives. Kind of like the same way they know how to walk at a certain time in their lives.

Maybe, the answer lies in the question. Maybe it just is not Chance's time to 'know' yet about the life stage that is cooties. Since he can hear just fine now, maybe his ears and mind will combine and confer on Chance the rite of passage that is the knowledge that the opposite sex does indeed have cooties. Whatever exactly those are.