Joseph was born October 19, 2004. He was by all means a pleasant baby. He was sleeping through the night at 6 weeks. He reached all his physical milestones early or at the appropriate time. He even had his full set of teeth in by his 1st birthday...yet he barely said a word. At his one year check up, his pediatrician asked how many words he spoke and he barely said ten.
During his second year, Joey was noticeably quiet. As friends' children the same age were advancing with their speech, Joey was not. He was more advanced than other children when it came to everything else so I wasn't worried. As his second birthday approached, my Mom voiced her concern that he wasn't repeating after us. I spoke to his pediatrician who ordered a hearing test and a consultation with an ENT. The audiologists were concerned and wanted to see him back for a retest when the middle ear fluid cleared up, while the ENT thought it was too soon to put tubes in his ears. The audiologists also hooked me up with a program through the state to get Joey started with speech therapy, which I started shortly after Joey's 2nd birthday.
I had Joey's hearing retested in March '07 and again I was told to bring him back when there was no middle ear fluid. He was prone to ear infections but was not having one at the time of the test so how was I to know when the middle ear fluid was present? I brought him back to the ENT, who finally agreed to place tubes in both ears. Joey had his surgery a few weeks later and on the very same day, he started repeating after us!
The ENT said Joey had "glue ear" because the middle ear fluid was solidifying. He heard everything as if he were underwater. I can't imagine what that was like and feel terrible for not catching it sooner. When your children don't have a voice, parents need to be their voice and I failed my son by not being his soon enough.