Aedyn was born deaf. Though you wouldn't know it, except for the two cochlear implants she wears through the day. We are so fortunate, here in BC, to have such wonderful health care for our children. Because of this, and after MANY tests, Aedyn was found to be a perfect candidate for bilateral Cochlear Implant surgery. And because of the funding in place for children, it didn't cost us a penny. She received two surgeries. First at 13 months old and the second at 32 months. I remember when she first started learning verbal languages...Spanish was coming in right along with her English. I was a little nervous because I didn't speak a word of Spanish!
In January 2013, she lost her left implant. Thank goodness for the system in place, she received her one free replacement. Unfortunately though, she again lost her left cochlear implant at the beach this past August. One of my biggest fears, is that something will happen to the one she has while we wait for a replacement. This would leave her with very little in terms of communication. I only have the ability to communicate with her through ASL at the level of a two-year old. It's also likely she would not be allowed at school during this time as teachers and daycare are not setup for this amount of care.
As most of you know my story, I am a new single mom with no support from the father. I work full-time, but I can't fully support us on a single income. I make due. Normally I wouldn't ask for help. Normally the needs of my children merely require sacrificing my own needs to keep up. As life would have it, many of Aedyn's needs are coming due all at the same time, to an extent that I cannot help her on my own.
I am in the process of applying for a grant through Variety, and a couple other foundations, to get funding for a replacement implant. A cost of between $8[phone redacted]. They are more generous to parents who travel all available roads, and it was suggested I try fundraising the money. Unfortunately, there are many other costs related to her implants that they do not cover: spare parts, accessories, implant insurance, medic alert memberships, and travels back and forth to the Children's hospital 3-4 times per year including the days I take off work to take her. And, because kids will be kids, I estimate that my annual costs to maintain her implants, at this age, will average $2120. Only going up as she requires more of the gadgets to get along in our techno-based world. For instance, special smoke alarms and alarm clocks, swimming covers, or if she ever wants to use a phone. Whatever I can raise on my own, with your help, leaves more money for the next family looking for help from these organizations.
So I am reaching out. To my friends and family. To Vancouver Isand and BC. To Canada and the World. To the Universe. This little girl is meant for something big. She has a view of the world as only one born without a sense could. The sheer appreciation she has for hearing, for whispers, for laughter and questions, for music and singing, for verbal thought and languages. She will paint with words in a way this world has never heard before. She sees sound like a waking dream.
Any donations will be appreciated. Everyday. For years to come.
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