Friday, June 20, 2014

My Baby Girls

A few weeks ago, I took N (and G) to visit her new preschool for the first time. Up to this point, Early Intervention has been sending someone to our home to work with N. Next month, N will turn 3 and age out of the program. On her birthday, she will be enrolled in Early Childhood Special Education - part of the public school system.

Overall, she absolutely loved it. She loves the idea of school, and having her own school to go to (just like her big brother). A few things really struck me with this visit.



I've grown so accustomed to N's disability that it no longer seems like a big deal or something out of the ordinary. In reality, she is the only preschool aged child in this county that qualifies for this program. 

To begin with, this means a one hour bus trip EACH WAY four days a week for preschool.  It's the nearest school I've found geared toward preschool aged children with relatively similar hearing impairments as N. By the time she's ready for Kindergarten, she'll be mainstreamed into "regular" classes. For the next two years, this is where she will go (assuming we don't move drastically out of the area in that time).

This visit really drove home just how fortunate we are that N's disability isn't more serious, but it also brought to my attention the reality that N's disability is just that - a disability.

No one anticipates their child being born with something like this or worse. We didn't expect N to have any issues, but her hearing loss was identified before we even left the hospital. And suddenly, I felt flooded with fear for this little baby girl in my belly.

I opted out of the genetic screening in this pregnancy. In all honesty, I don't think I've done it with any of my pregnancies. The screenings are not 100%, and I've never had any intentions of not keeping my babies, so the tests didn't seem worthwhile. N's hearing loss wouldn't have been detected by those tests anyway.

As I sit here now, waiting for this little girl to make her appearance, I worry for her. I guess that's only natural. We always worry for our kids, don't we? I just want her to be healthy.

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