Just recently, an emotional experience for one family from Louisville, KY hit YouTube for the world to witness. 10-month-old baby girl Addison was born deaf until one very special day, when her parents took her to see an audiologist. Thanks to modern medical technology, she hears the sounds in the room for the very first time.
Akilah and Brad Elanders are the proud parents of this little cutie, who just lights up when her mother now speaks to her. “Addison I love you, I love you! Yeah, I do, I’ve been waiting a long time to tell you!” her mother says in the video, with a huge smile appearing on her baby’s face.
The first words Addison heard were of her mothers, telling her she loved her while holding her in her arms. The magic moment brought tears to her baby’s eyes.
Addison’s first reaction to the sound of her mother’s voice were tears. She was confused, understandably, but it did not take her long to get used to the sound.
When Addison was born, her diagnosis was hard for her parents to accept, yet they never gave up hope for their child and were determined to help her. After much research, they stumbled upon something they thought might help her.
Cochlear implants were what they discovered and it seemed like the perfect idea for their baby girl. Reportedly, these implants were the same one’s seen in another famous video by 29-year-old Sloan Churman who also tearfully hears a voice for the first time. Since Addison was just about the right age to receive the procedure, her mother assumed it would work out. The procedure was granted for their little one, when normally patients should be at least the age of one, but Addison’s mother did not want to have her daughter wait.
Even though her baby might not understand the words “I love you” just yet, “It means a lot for her to be able to hear it,” her mother said, crying. Addison’s mother hopes the video will help to raise awareness about the procedure. She wants to show the hearing impaired community they have different options available to them.
Both Cochlear ear implants were done at the same time, so Addison would not need another trip to the doctor. The healing process is reportedly long after having this particular procedure. There are some risks involved in the procedure and interested patients who were born deaf or otherwise should get informed from their doctors about any after effects.
Addison has a big sister which her parents now hope she can keep up with, and they look forward to watching her play with noisy toys now that she is no longer deaf.
While most mothers are happy to hear their children laugh, Akilah Elanders was happy just to hear her baby’s tearful reaction to the sound of her own voice. “I was happy to hear her cry,” she said.
Having been born deaf, this baby girl never had the opportunity to experience the world around her like those of her peers. For the first time, her parents believe Addison will fit in more with other children because she hears just as they do. “She fit in before, but it felt like she had something stolen, I think it’s fair, it’s her turn,” she said.
By Katie Sevigny