Thursday, July 10, 2014

The Coo Coos

Friendship means so many different things to me and it's hard to explain to some people. Our group of friends have been together since grade school and have cried together when you think you can't take anymore and celebrated life when your life rocks! My girls are the coo coo's- you may remember the Ya Ya sisterhood, well it is very similar to that. These are the sisters that I chose, the ones that know all my fears, lived through my faults and embraced who I am today.

Friendship means standing by your best friend on their wedding day when you know they are following their heart; not necessarily their head. It's driving four hours one way when you best friend gives birth, then picking up and driving back home that same day. It's being the first one at the funeral home when you loose a loved one unexpectedly. Friendship is blasting "Like a Virgin" in college and dancing around your apartment for hours; laughing and making memories.

Friendship is not judging, but understanding. Understanding that we are all different and we don't have to have the same life as everyone else, and we don't want to. It's realizing that you have been friends for 20 years and so proud of the mothers, wives, and women they have become. You treat their children as your own and understand that it's okay for them to have other friends. Friendship is not letting distance make you grow apart, but having a phone date with a glass of wine is just as fun as a girls night out.

The Coo Coo's embrace their imperfections as mothers and women and rely on each other to help them get through life. We laugh until we cry and cry until we are cracking up. Life is short to not laugh at yourself. Friendship is saying your sorry. The Coo Coo's understand my love for the red carpet and know when I need a hug.

Friendship is forgiving before you even know you did something wrong. It's really being there...literally. Knowing that as we get older life gets busy; don't let time be the reason you go weeks without talking. It's calling because you heard a song on the radio or saw something so funny that only your fellow coo coo's would understand.

This past weekend I went back home to Avon Lake and was able to be reunited with these girls. We laughed, we talked and we cried. We went and got best friend tattoos and now are bonded for life! I got to see their children and hang out with their loved ones- everything about last weekend was awesome.

I can only hope that my daughters will have friendships as solid as ours. Ones that aren't scared to tell you the truth, but don't judge you in the meantime. Friendships that celebrate everyone's accomplishments and aren't competitive in nature. Ones that are honest but comforting when they were totally right and you didn't listen. A friendship that is easy; one that doesn't require you to dress a certain way or be in the same economic class. Once they have these type of friendships, a Coo Coo is born!

Birds of a feather flock together....

Cochlear Implant Child

Being a mom of a child with cochlear implants is different. I can't really explain it any other way but just different. Now that I have a hearing child, it makes it even more relavant that my first time as a mom was...different. Ok, ill be honest, it was HORIFYING. Before Riley was able to hear I couldn't soothe her with my voice. She didn't hear the sounds of the television or vacuum cleaner to wake her up. She never turned to sounds or was startled when I walked in the door; this is all stuff I am learning right now with Emerson.

Cochlear implants parents experience different things that eventually seem "normal", whatever that is. Nothing surprises you and you are constantly aware of your surrounding. I have been thinking about how my life is different and thought I would make a list. You know you're a mom of a child with cochlear implants if:

  1. You use the word CI more than eat, sleep or bath.
  2. calendars do you no justice- I live day by day to make sure everyone (including daycare, grandma and dad) is on the same page with days we have therapy- which is three times per week.
  3. You will be amazed by how many times you can say "moo" or "quack" in an hour (200 to be exact).
  4. Everything is a teaching moment
  5. Troubleshooting a red light is like diagnosing a chronically ill patient
  6. you are terrified of plastic slides
  7. You are on a first name basis with you audiologist and the company that makes your implant- in our case Advanced Bionic.
  8. Fed Ex comes to your house about once a week
  9. People stare at you- and your child. It makes you sad but they do.
  10. When traveling anywhere, you grab extra cords, batteries, processors and anything else you can find.
  11. You constantly fear your child throwing their CI in the toilet- my worst nightmare
  12. You hear things- things you never really "heard" before, you hear. Cars driving by can be so exciting to someone who has never heard them
  13. When they are sleeping you can be as loud as you want; this is also good for bad storms in the middle of the night.
  14. The I love you sign is your family symbol; and we don't even use sign language
  15. When someone says "are you deaf" in public, I get nausaus in my stomach
  16. Brown Bear is your favorite book you read everynight
  17. You dread the day you have to have "the talk" and answer question on why she is different from her sister and everyone else.
  18. You know what "Ling 6" and "Learning to Listen" sounds are
  19. You can't understand why parents teach their kids the alphabet in the bathtub
  20. waterproof CI's are the best thing since sliced bread.
  21. You look at your child and still get an overwhelming sadness; you're still not over it.
  22. You realize your child's education is your responsibility; not the states or school systems
I sometimes wonder what life would be like if Riley wasn't born deaf or didn't have cochlear implants. The reality is I couldn't really imagine her without it. Its a big part of who she is and who we have become as a family. She will never know any different...and that's okay with us!

Thursday, July 3, 2014

She's HERE!

Well two months ago she's here. I have been a really bad blogger and I apologize. It wasn't intentional, it just happened. Now with two babies under two life is pretty crazy amazing. I also have been contemplating what to do with my blog since I now I have to babies. I created this blog as a journey for me, on my road to motherhood, then it became a mom blog and a baby book for Riley, then it became all about riley and her hearing journey; I'm going to keep it to that. There may be some parenting, mommy posts here and there but I want to keep the Mae flowers and focus on her journey. Now more than ever I am so motivated to get her access to sound and developing expressive language.

Now back to Emerson Marie....

She's an angel. Such a gem. A beauty. I can't imagine my life without her already. This experience of motherhood the second time around is just as amazing. The love keeps growing for these girls. I never knew how I could love more than Riley Mae, but I do. It just happens.

Emerson passed her hearing test with flying colors! Thank you jesus. Even though we were totally prepared if she didn't, I thank God she did. Having a baby that is hearing is a whole different experience.

Riley love Emma. She runs up to her if she's crying. She pets her and pats her back. She tries to pick her up if she's crying; until I run up because she might throw her across the room:) I am just so proud of how she has taken to Em. I was nervous about her being jealous but that isn't the case at all. She's going to be the best big sister.

My heart if complete (for now). I have everything I want right here in my little family. Emerson makes everything better. I can't wait to see them grow and go through all of life's challenges, tribulations and most important memories:)