What a long week. Owen got referred at the hospital from his newborn hearing screening and so we had to drive into Boston last Thursday for the long and involved hearing test. Not a fun drive right through rush hour traffic. I give this boy credit though, he did great. I laughed when I got the letter describing the testing. Your baby has to be asleep for it, so they recommend keeping your baby awake until right before the testing is scheduled to start, and then nursing them to sleep. Anyone want to tell me how to get a 9 day old to agree to this? Really though, I was surprised, he cooperated and slept great. Sadly though, Owen has moderate hearing loss in both ears, of the permenant type. He can hear, but will miss most things quieter than conversation between two people who are close together. We're going to be seeing a specialist to get him fitted for hearing aids as soon as possible, and to start working with early intervention to get my DH and I up and running with sign language to supplement spoken English from as early an age as possible. The state has aprogram for parents where they send a sign language tutor to your house to teach both parents and child. Fortunately, Massachusetts has some fantastic resources available for free for us to take advantage of. We're very lucky with that. Does it make any sense that I'm more stressed about telling the family than I am about dealing with this? Maybe it's just the SpEd teacher in me. I know he'll be fine, but the family is going to be stressed, especially since this is the first grandbaby on either side. Owen's hearing was a complete surprise. No hearing issues at all in my family. I got to visit the audiologist today and once again Owen behaved angelicly. We got to talk over his hearing results in deyail, and hear a computer simulation of what a regular conversation would sound like, given Owen's hearing loss. At the moment, he'll hear most of a conversation 6-12 inches away, but nothing beyond that. It was scary to see how little he's hearing now. We did the fitting for hearing aids as well, and they're good enough these days to bring his hearing up to a normal range. The aids are even smart enough to amplify quiet sounds lots and to not amplify really loud sounds at all. The aids should last arleast 5 years but the ear molds get reolaced as he grows, so lots and lots of replacements for this first year. We decided to skip all the pretty colored aids for now. The big irritation now is that insurance doesn't cover hearing aids at all, so it's time to do some serious fund raising and saving. $2000 for the pair, plus batteries every 2 weeks or so. At least the ear molds are included for the first year, no matter how many he needs. And now the fun, telling the families now that we have details.