Everett Colley, 9 month old son of Ashley and Zachary, was born with a negative hearing test. Although most parents would have gotten super worried, they remained calm because their two other children both had a negative hearing test when they were born and it turned out that both of them could hear a couple weeks later. Doctors thought that the reason for Everett’s negative hearing tests was a fluid buildup in his ears. But when his mom, Ashley, came back one month later, she found out that that was not the case.
“Then I went back for an auditory brain response test and that’s when she pulled her chair up and said he has profound hearing loss. That’s all I can remember, and everything else was a blur, I felt like I was kind of looking through her. It doesn’t run in the family and it’s hard not to think of all the bad things at first, so I was very much in shock. Because of Covid I was by myself, my husband was waiting in the car, and I just remember struggling to get out of the hospital and breaking down as soon as I saw him.”
Everett was born deaf which led him to communicate using sign language. But when his parents found out about cochlear surgery they jumped at the idea. Cochlear surgery is when an electronic device is placed in someone’s ear that simulates the nerve for hearing. The implant has two parts to it. The interior and the exterior part. First they implant the first part and make sure that it is intact and fits properly. Then, a couple weeks later, the exterior part gets attached.
Everett went through the surgery and got the first part of the implant put in. Then, a couple weeks later, he came back for the exterior part of the cochlear implant. That part makes it so that the person receiving the surgery can hear. Everett, after getting the surgery, loved being able to hear his family for the first time. He would not stop smiling and hugging his mom.
Everett continues to love listening to his family and even picked up some musical interest and listens to music.