On November 5th, 2013 Carson Caleb Copher was born at 7:12 pm. He weighed 7 lbs. 12 oz. and was 20 3/4 inches long. After what seemed like endless months of swollen feet and spiking blood pressure, twenty two hours of labor welcomed me into “mommy hood.” He was perfect from the moment I laid eyes on him.
On November 6th, 2013 Carson failed his first hearing test.
Every newborn is screened for hearing loss before they leave the hospital (here in Florida at least). After Carson failed I was told that it’s not uncommon for newborns to fail and that I shouldn’t worry. “Don’t worry” is a phrase that a new mom will never understand. After that day the seed was planted. I would never stop worrying. It doesn’t take long for a mother’s intuition to kick in. Other people were hopeful that he was fine. Everyone assured me he would pass the next one. But I knew he wouldn’t. It’s not that I wasn’t hoping he would pass, of course I was. I just always had that feeling deep down that told me not to get my hopes up because I knew better.
On January 16th, 2014 I found out that I am a good mother. I have never doubted it, but as a new mother confirmation never hurts. I found out that I know my son. Knowing that you truly know and understand your child after such a short amount of time is a good feeling. However, with the circumstances I found myself in there was no such thing as a good feeling. After one last test I was forced to finally attempt to accept the one thing I had spent weeks trying to ignore. My son is deaf.
When you find out your child has a disability there is nothing anyone can say to take away the questions and the guilt. Carson is the product of high school sweethearts who jumped the gun a little bit. On my wedding day I was 12 weeks pregnant with my little man. Getting pregnant before I was married doesn’t make Carson any less loved or my relationship with my husband any less stable. It means that my husband and I are human, and like all humans we make mistakes. I am a firm believer that all sin is equal in God’s eyes and that there are consequences for every sin. I can’t help but wonder if things would be different if we would have just waited.
It has been almost a month, and I am still struggling. I see mothers all the time who don’t pay any attention to their kids. These are the kind of people who could have 12 kids, and each one of them would be perfectly healthy. I really have to try hard to not be resentful towards most of the people that I see whose kids are normal. I know it could be way worse and that everything happens for a reason, but sometimes that just isn’t enough. I don’t think I will ever fully accept it. I will always have questions, and I will never understand why God picked me out off all people to have a deaf baby. My heart breaks thinking about the struggles Carson will have to face because of his disability. He didn’t ask for this. I wish more than anything that somehow God could take my hearing and give it to Carson. I have already been able to hear songs on the radio, birds chirping outside, waves crashing on the beach, my mother’s voice, things we all take for granted. I hope more than anything that Carson will one day know what my voice sounds like. I want so desperately to tell him how much I love him and for him to hear the words “I love you.” We have a long road ahead of us, and I hope it ends with him hearing those three simple words. But right now we just have to take life one day at a time and walk by faith.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Prov. 3:5&6