Happy New Year Family and Friends!
To watch Landon's progress from Day 1 at Clarke to today, click here
What a journey into parenthood we have had thus far! As most of you know, Landon was diagnosed Profoundly Deaf at 10 weeks old. It was a hard pill to swallow especially since there was no hearing loss in either Jack or my family.
Immediately there was so much sadness...all the songs, conversations, I Love Yous....so many moments that I thought meant the world to both of us seem to become irrelevant as my baby never heard any of it. What would Landon's future hold? How many opportunities would he forfeit because he couldn't hear or speak? If only I could seen the future! Landon is 4 1/2 years old and NEVER STOPS TALKING! The stories, the songs, that contagious laugh, so many I love yous! Those moments were special then and are even sweeter now.
Our hearing journey began with hearing aides at 6 months, then cochlear implants at age 2 and 2.5. Our educational and supportive relationship with Clarke Schools for Hearing and Speech Florida began at 16 months old and was a total game changer. Jack and I stopped at nothing to find Landon the best resources available not just in Orlando. It was our visit to the John Tracy Clinic (JTC) in California for the week long International Toddler Intensive Program in Summer 2017 when we had our 'AHA' moment!
It was there that we met families from around the world asking questions we already had answers to... how did we know so much already? Because we were enrolled in the Tele-vist program with Ms Nancy and later Ms Melissa at Clarke, we had been educated about all things Hearing loss for the previous 10 months. During those tele-visits, we learned about how to play with Landon to efficiently input words, we learned the importance and differences between AVT and AVed AND how to implement constant listening and spoken language in everything we did with Landon. We learned about charting his hearing loss, the job of the audiologist and the importance of ling checks. Some of these things we also learned from other wonderful sources in Orlando but Clarke knew it ALL just as JTC did. We knew upon leaving the JTC that we had one of the best programs not just in Orlando but one of the best programs for DHH kids currently offered in the World. We had what we needed to provide Landon his best chance of success with spoken language in Clarke schools for Hearing and Speech. It was an extra bonus that Clarke opened a satellite location 35 minutes from our home saving us the 4 hour round trip drive to Jackonville.
Fast forward 2 years and 3 months and our Landon has gone from a 20 word vocabulary that no one but us could understand to being a highly social 4 year old speaking in simple and complicated sentences, telling grand stories and reminding us of promises we make to him like ice cream after dinner or play dates with friends.
We thank Clarke Schools for constantly educating us parents, and challenging Landon in a fun way which allows him to love going to school. He is a special little dude that has all the potential this world has to offer! His deafness will NOT hold him back or define him, it's just a fun fact in his crazy game of life :)
Thank you to all of those who have donated to his campaign! Remember, donating to Landon means your funds will stay in Orlando helping our DHH Kids! XOXO
Jack, Megan, Landon and Liam Lutzeier
Sent from my iPhone