Parents' Letter (June 12, 2012)
Dear Chance Foundation!
We are the parents of a little girl from Bobrujsk. Her name is Dasha. Our baby daughter came to the world on October 12, 2005. She was born healthy and strong. Dasha was developing very well. At the age of 3-4 months she started cooing, at 6-7 months she began babbling. She was babbling something in her own language. Everybody longed to hear the dear words “Mom, Dad and Nanny”.
We started watching her behavior closely. And it was getting more and more clear to us that our baby couldn’t hear. We went to see the doctors (a pediatrician and ENT). But they assured us that we were making everything up, that the child could hear perfectly well.
In December 2007 Dasha was diagnosed with severe bilateral sensorineural hearing loss. It was a shock for us! Hadn’t my husband been by my side at that moment But we had been always together and decided that we would also handle the problem together. We didn’t know what it was or how we could help our child. We didn’t know how to live with it. We had no answers, only questions.
In 2007 Dasha was given a free hearing-aid. Unfortunately, it was no use — the hearing loss was too serious. In 2011 Dasha received a cochlear implant. She was 27 months at the time. And she started learning to hear! She listened, watched, sometimes got scared. Gradually she started hearing our voices, somebody knocking at the door, the sound of the running water. And then the first words emerged — the dear long-expected words we had been looking forward to hearing. This is what real happiness is! Sure, we achieved all this only with the help of our family and speech-therapist. The speech therapist is still helping us.
Four years have passed since the surgery. Dasha goes to a regular day care center, twice a week she has classes with our speech therapist. At home Dasha reads, paints, dances and always tells something! Also our Dasha became a bronze medallist at the Fit-Kid Childrens’ Fitness European Cup. She attends an Orthodox Church Sunday school.
Dasha has achieved a lot, but not as much as she could have. She loves singing. But the hearing aid she has now doesn’t allow the girl to hear the words and their endings right. She gets upset when she can’t hear something. The specialists recommend us to get a new, more powerful speech processor, thanks to which Dasha will be able to hear better. It is OPUS 2 speech processor produced by an Austrian company MED-EL. The device costs a lot. We are unable to save or raise so much money on our own. The amount is way too big for our family. Both my husband and I are school teachers. We have a younger son. Не is four.
We want our daughter not to be different from other kids. We want her so much to learn to hear and speak well. We believe there are people with big and open hearts who will respond to our call for help.
With great hope and respect,
The Borodin family
July 6, 2012