February 24, 2009

The First Year of AVT

Hadley was six months old when we began our two hour weekly AVT sessions with Lea Watson. Initially, we treated AVT as a big research project. I read every book I could about auditory-verbal therapy, joined every organization for parents of hard-of-hearing children, learned what other auditory-verbal programs did, and reviewed all of the research on genetics and hearing loss. I joked that it was just like being back in college, except my grade was my daughter's development.

For me, the key to making the first year of AVT work was having complete faith in Lea. By the time we met her, Dan and I had already weeded through various professionals in our quest to develop a strong support team for Hadley. We had a sense of what we were looking for. There was an instant connection with Lea that developed quickly into a strong trust of her judgment. I remember telling Dan that I would do everything she suggested for six months in order to make the best effort at making AVT work for our family. Looking back, that effort was similar to maintaining an exercise routine or giving up caffeine. We made an immediate lifestyle choice to commit ourselves to AVT. This was not rocket science: talking, singing, reading books- all normal, natural things you would do with any baby. This was a decision to be actively engaged in developing our daughter's listening and speaking skills, and all that encompassed. It seems so simple, but it made a significant difference.

No comments:

Post a Comment