Johann is a jolly, eight year old boy who loves maps, building blocks, and drawing. He is born with sensorineural hearing loss on both ears due to unknown causes. He was a healthy baby but hearing screening tests suggested that something was amiss. Further hearing tests like OAE, ABR, ASSR were conducted and results were consistent, Johann has mild to moderate hearing loss on his left ear and moderate to severe hearing loss in his right ear. On Johann’s seventh month of life, he was given hearing aids and started on speech therapy.
At age five, Johann was diagnosed with a secondary condition called Dyspraxia of Speech which delayed his speech and motor planning capabilities. He started on PROMPT therapy to address this diagnosis. He also started homeschooling soon after to afford him one on one, customised, and personalised learning.
At age seven, through his annual hearing tests, it was observed that Johann’s hearing loss is progressing. His hearing loss at his right ear is now at severe to profound levels. Johann’s team of God-sent experts have recommended he undergo cochlear implantation to help him hear better.
At first we, as Johann’s parents, were hesitant. We wanted to make sure that it will be the best option for Johann. We were worried for not just the medical part of the process, but also for the psychological part, for Johann and all of us. Maintaining cochlear implants is different from maintaining hearing aids. We were, of course, also scared of the financial aspect, for ours is a simple one-income family.
After much prayer and discernment, we (Johann’s family) have pushed through the biggest endeavour of our lives, for the love of Johann. We raised approximately 25,000 USD (or 1.1M PHP) for the cochlear implant device alone. It has been a feat for us, his parents, but through God’s mercy and grace, we believed this was something bigger than us.
He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.
As we journey forward with Johann and hearing loss, we pray that our story touches you and gives you inspiration. It will not be easy, but it will be worth it.[Updated 2018]