Journey with my daughterSubmitted by Jumin on Tue, 03/03/2015 - 14:05
Early Intervention Teacher
I am Jayalekshmi, working as an EIP teacher at NISH. I’ve reached where I am after a very long journey. The journey began with my kids. I have two daughters, the eldest is Parvathy. She is hearing impaired.
My daughter’s undisturbed sleep on the day she was born raised doubts in my mind. ‘Why was her sleep not disturbed by the sounds around her?’ Being born and brought up in a small village and not very much aware of what was happening in the world around me, I kept these thoughts ringed with doubts to myself. As time passed by, doubts regarding my daughter’s hearing ability strengthened. When she was seven months old, I took her to an ENT doctor in my hometown. The doctor advised me to observe my daughter till the age of three. But when she was 1½ years old, my husband and I decided to consult another doctor. And that’s how at the age of 1½ my daughter’s hearing loss was confirmed.
I could not accept that diagnosis about my daughter. I was angry with the doctor who told me about her hearing loss. I was also angry with myself. This shocking news in the early years of my wedded life, changed it forever.
When everyone after their marriage tries to build a strong relationship with their spouse, I was earnestly searching high and low for ways/routes to bring my daughter into the speaking world. My search brought me to NISH in 1997. My daughter was then 3 years old. By that time, I gave birth to my second daughter.
It was only after coming to NISH, I realized the extent of the difficulties that a child faces because he or she is deaf. It was there I heard something that brought great joy to my heart. If a parent works with dedication, he or she can train the child to speak like a hearing child to some extent. I believed this statement 100% and because of this, I strongly feel that I could make my child talk. I went to NISH like a kid going to school for the first time, to learn how to develop language skills in my daughter. My schooling or studies ended when my daughter turned 5 ½ and when she was able to read, write, comprehend and speak Malayalam almost similar to that of a hearing child of the same age.
During that time I faced many difficulties but I overcame them and was able to admit my child to the first standard in a regular school. If it was not for the support and encouragement of my family, especially the cooperation of my younger daughter, I would not have been able to take admission for Parvathy in a regular school. My younger daughter till the age of 5 grew under the care of her grandparents. The most important years of my younger daughter’s childhood was under the care of her grandparents. I gave a lot of attention to Parvathy’s studies in school. I regularly met with her teachers to discuss the problems that my deaf child faced in class and also to make them understand the help and support that she would require from her teachers and classmates.
Parvathy passed her Xth class with high marks. After her tenth she faced a lot of difficulties in plus two as this was in the English medium. It took her some time to comprehend English. Now she is a student of the Govt. Engineering College at Thiruvananthapuram where she is pursuing architectural engineering. She is in her 3rd year now. There is good improvement in her English language and she is doing her course without many problems. I devoted the good years of my life for my daughter and I sincerely feel that God has shown me the way to take and due to this I could bring up my daughter to the level that she is now. I am eternally grateful for the unconditional support of my family especially my husband and my younger daughter. I can only imagine the hardships that they may have had during the time I spent with Parvathy.
I am deeply obliged to NISH and the teachers at NISH for guiding me to bring up my deaf daughter into a well-adjusted individual. I am confident that the blessings and good wishes of the teachers at NISH will only bring good tidings in my daughter’s life.