A Song To Die To
“You should buy a decent radio and speakers.”
It takes me several seconds to pull my thoughts back to his voice.
“Excuse me?” I’m lost. I have been a mother for only a day, and have already come to the realization that I can not protect my child from life.
“Speakers. The vibrations. He’ll enjoy it. We’ll do one more hearing test before he leaves and continually check in. I’m going to send the nurse in with some additional information about what steps you should take. I know it may not seem ideal to receive this information so soon, but I assure you the earlier we recognize hearing loss, the better that little guy’s chances for decent language and cognitive development become.”
On the way home I turn the music all of the way up. I drop the treble down and turn the bass way up. I cry.
The next test along with all of the follow up appointments go no better.
As years pass I spend every bit I earn on making his life more full. Hearing aids. Drum sets. Sign language teachers. Classes for the deaf. Special phones. A baby grand piano. A light that blinks throughout the whole apartment when the doorbell rings. Music lessons. Translators. Sounds for the car. Anything that can bring any semblance of that lovely thing called noise that I have always taken for granted and anything that can help him overcome the obstacles that might come from a lack of sound in your universe.
The first thing I registered when the doctor told me he may never hear was that I needed to provide him with constant sound. He may not always hear it. But he could still enjoy it. And he did. He spent his life blasting music. Learning piano and guitar and drums. Writing notes and composing elegant melodies that he brought to life through any instrument he could master. The happiness that these vibrations brought him were more beautiful than anything I had experienced.
I learned just a day after he was born that I could not protect him from life. And I continued learning throughout his entire life. But as I lay here passing my last breaths I can’t help but fall in love. My vision has long since failed me, but next to me as the lights inside me flicker out, I hear a sweet song. He kisses my cheek, and I feel warm tears fall on my face just before I let the notes swallow what’s left in my lungs.