Monday, August 29, 2011

When You Find Out Who Your Friends Are

I've mentioned lots of times about the fact that CJ has always struggled with making friends his own age.  He does great with adults, probably because they speak slowly and clearly for him and are patient when he needs them to repeat what they say. Adults also tend to accept his quirkiness better than peers his own age.

Given the fact that he has to work so hard to make friends, it was a really big deal when he was invited to a birthday party for a little girl at church.  Regan is just a few months older than him, and your typical happy-go-lucky always smiling little girl.  She's about as cute as any kiddo could ever be, and she treats CJ like a regular kid.

CJ put a LOT of thought into what he wanted to get her for her birthday.  First he wanted to get her a talking parrot to sit on her shoulder, and then he wanted to get her some fish.  With a little encouragement in another direction, he finally settled on some lovely hairbands and a necklace with five rings in it. He was SO PROUD of his gift!  Byron and I were out of town on the day of the party, so we didn't get to hear how it went. He just told us he had a good day and didn't go too far into details.

On Saturday, I learned that CJ truly has a great friend in Regan.  We were at a mutual pool party to sort of bid the summer farewell, and she came running up to me and we had the following conversation:
Regan: Sister SuperMom, my mom said if it's okay with you, I can learn.
Me: Learn what?
Regan: Well, at my party CJ couldn't hear me because he had to take his ears off. I tried to tell him it was time for cake and presents, but I guess he didn't understand what I said.  Then,  he came over later and said, "What? You started without me?".  I think he was sad because he missed it.  Does he always have to take off his ears to swim?
Me: Well, he'll be able to get his new implant a little bit wet, but he'll usually have to take it all off for swimming.
Regan: Well, that's why I need to learn.
Me: Learn what?
R: Sign language! If I learn sign language, CJ will be able to understand me when we're at the pool and we can play together.
Me: Regan, if you want to learn sign language, I will teach you ANYTHING you want to know!
Regan: Yay! THANK YOU, Sister SuperMom!!!

This may seem like a simple conversation to some, but it was a really important conversation in terms of CJ's life.  He has a real friend. She noticed a need, and didn't just make fun of him for it.  Instead, she took it upon herself to do something to make it better.

It is truly a blessing when you find out who your friends are!


  1. Wow, what a wonderful, compassionate, loving little girl! CJ has a good friend there!

  2. This is probably the most encouraging blog post that I've ever read! I've worried so much about our son being accepted by his hearing just lifted my spirits so high. Thank you so much for sharing this!