Meet little Lyla Begaye who was born ten months ago with Microtia and Atresia of her left ear. Lyla and her family live in Glenwood Springs, Colorado. When Lyla was born, a newborn hearing test was conducted, but the hospital continued to test Lyla up to three times until she passed the newborn hearing screening. Lyla’s family was told that she probably had fluid in her ears. As time went on, Lyla’s mom, Nakita, began to notice that “she wasn’t responding very fast to sounds.” Once realizing Lyla didn’t have an ear canal, the family took Lyla to a pediatrician. This pediatrician was shocked that no one had caught this following Lyla’s birth. Lyla’s family was then sent to Children’s Colorado Hospital where they were able to meet with an audiologist.
After visiting with Dr. Karen Harris (audiologist), Lyla was informed about a bone conduction hearing device and was given the chance to borrow one during a trial period. Since Lyla has been aided during the trial period, her parents Nakita and William, noticed that “Lyla began reacting faster to sounds and starting to turn and figure out where the sounds were coming from.” When Lyla’s family was unable to obtain a hearing device through insurance, the family was told about the Ear Community Organization and applied for a bone anchored hearing device for Lyla.
On June 21st, 2016, Lyla was fitted with her new Baha 5 from Cochlear Americas that was donated by the Ear Community Organization. During Lyla’s fitting, she turns her eyes toward Melissa Tumblin, Founder of the Ear Community Organization and the voice behind the video below) during Lyla’s reaction to sound. “It was a wonderful experience to be able to be present during Lyla’s fitting,” Melissa Tumblin says as this was her first local fitting she has been able to attend on behalf of the organization. “It is very rewarding to see the gift of hearing be given to a child,” says Tumblin. Tumblin. Also, Tumblin had her two daughters, Ally (whom the organization was founded after Ally was born with Microtia and Atresia of her right ear in 2009) and Hailey, her older daughter, with her during Lyla’s appointment to experience how nice it is to help someone. Lyla’s grand parents also joined us at Lyla’s fitting and couldn’t be more excited for their granddaughter knowing that she can now hear better, especially during her critical years of development. During Lyla’s fitting, she received a stuffed nemo fishy and an Ear Community “Microtia Kids Rock” t-shirt from the Ear Community Organization along with “Vibe” the stuffed Baha moose from Cochlear. So, now Lyla has lots of stuffed pals to keep her company during her up coming months of exploring her environment and hearing the sounds of life.
Here is the link to the video of Lyla being switched on with her new Baha 5 sound processor: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CBCnrztqyak
Ear Community is a nonprofit organization that helps the Microtia and Atresia community worldwide. Ear Community is so very thankful for the help that it receives and when other organizations come together to help Ear Community with its mission, to help children and adults born with Microtia and Atresia. “Thank you to Cochlear Americas for helping little Lyla live a better quality of life by donating her new Baha 5 processor so she can hear better,” says Melissa Tumblin.
Ear Community would especially like to thank Stacey Jones and Kara Golmont of Cochlear Americas for donating the Baha 5 to our organization so Ear Community could help Lyla hear better. “Cochlear is the global leader in implantable hearing solutions. It has a dedicated global team of more than 2,500 people who deliver the gift of sound to those with hearing loss in over 100 countries. Its vision is to connect people, young and old, to a world of sound by offering life enhancing hearing solutions. In 2013, Cochlear celebrates 100,000 Baha System users – all with unique stories of how being able to hear again has impacted their lives. The Cochlear promise of “Hear Now. And Always” embodies the company’s commitment to providing its recipients with the best possible hearing performance today and for the rest of their lives.”
Here are some fun memories from Lyla’s special day during her fitting with her Cochlear America’s Baha 5: