Ayva's Story | Child Development Center of Natrona County

Ayva’s Story


Ayva in a tree.CDC has been a huge part of our lives since my daughter was 3 months old. Ayva was born on February 12, 2014. The following day after she was born a nurse walked into my room to inform me “your baby failed the hearing screening, come back in 7 days and we will retest her.” I knew she wasn’t like her older siblings.

One week later we went in to repeat the hearing screening. She slept soundly as though nothing happened and the nurse repeated it several times thinking something was wrong with the machine. At that time, she failed the screening on her right side.

Not long after that, we were referred to Children’s Hospital of Colorado. We sat for an hour as we did her first of many sleeping ABR studies. When the audiologist informed us, she had moderately severe sensorineural hearing loss I just broke down in tears. My first thoughts were how was she going to know how much I loved her and how will she enjoy music? She was fitted with cute little hearing aids. For the first few months of her life her hearing loss progressed to profound hearing loss. She then qualified for cochlear implants.

CDC entered our lives when Ayva was 3 months old. A few people from CDC came and evaluated Ayva to start infant services. She qualified for speech therapy automatically with the diagnosis of hearing loss, but also qualified for occupational therapy.

At first, it was a struggle for me to allow strangers into my house. Erin Dona would come for Ayvas’s first year and make sure she was hitting her milestones. She was friendly and Ayva loved when she would come and play. Jan Hinz was Ayva’s speech therapist. She started coming when Ayva was 3 months old and stayed with us until she went to preschool at age 3. While Ayva was an infant we worked on her communication and sign language. Having a deaf child was a huge responsibility that I never took lightly. I probably asked Jan 1 million questions about deaf kids and possible choices. She helped me connect with other people and services like the deaf library and meeting people of DHH services.

Cochlear Implant

In April 2015, Ayva was bilaterally implanted with cochlear implants and she was activated in May 2015. We then focused on spoken language during speech therapy and we worked with Ayva to build her vocabulary. Jan is still one of Ayva’s favorite people to see. We love her a lot as she became a part of the family and is very special to us.

Ayva continued on with CDC going to preschool for two and a half years. The front desk ladies were always friendly and helpful. Other employees became familiar faces. Ayva has had a few different speech therapists, but it was always nice to see them in the hall as years went on. The teachers were receptive to Ayva’s needs and her IEP was always followed.

CDC helped Ayva become the happy and social kid she is now. She is in a mainstream kindergarten classroom and is very typical compared to her peers. CDC played a huge role in her success in a classroom and at home. She still loves her CDC school and I would suggest anyone, special needs or not, send their child to CDC.