David is a remarkable 23 year-old young man.
Despite multiple disabilities, including cerebral palsy, hearing loss, cortical visual impairment, and intellectual and language developmental disabilities, David is successfully working in three different worksites and has a thriving social life.
- Though David’s hearing loss wasn’t identified until he was 3 years old, he was not considered for CI until his late teens.
- His mother reports that he loved his first cochlear implant so much that he took his remaining hearing aid, flushed it down the toilet and demanded a second cochlear implant.
- He has a fantastic network of family and caregivers who support David and help foster his ability to communicate independently despite the many obstacles he works to overcome.
On communication modality . . . He is a sign language user and also uses a Vantage speech generating device for communications. We have always taken a total communication approach focusing on communication with family, friends, and others in the community.
Enjoying all of life’s sounds . . . David is a huge music fan and is often found at the stage at music venues and festivals around NC watching his favorite bands. He uses his hearing very well to answer when people talk to him or to take in sounds in the environment. He especially loves bells, wind chimes and on a recent trip to NYC David told us he loved the city because there were so many noises and cars honking their horns.
The impact of better hearing . . . We have seen improvement in many other areas such as willingness to try to use his voice, paying attention at plays or other events, and he is motivated to try to communicate with many other people in ways that he couldn’t before. He still uses all of his modalities to communicate. Hearing what is happening around him and responding to all of it has been the most amazing part of receiving the CIs for David. They have truly transformed his life.
– Gwen, mother of David