Children's stories

Destiny of a Child help many children pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas.

Adrien Raymond

"I know that in my Mummy’s tummy I could hear well because during her pregnancy she used to listen to “The Magic Flute” all day long and now it is my favourite piece of music."

My name is Adrien and I can count up to 5, a good job since I was 5 in July. My Mummy is Franco- German and my Daddy is Franco- Argentinian, so at home we have the challenge of speaking 3 languages. Obviously this causes my parents problems during the Football World Cup when their home countries play against each other.

For me, this has caused even more problems, being profoundly deaf, probably from a very young age, but.... let’s wait and see...

I know that in my Mummy’s tummy I could hear well because during her pregnancy she used to listen to “The Magic Flute” all day long and now it is my favourite piece of music.

I was born but I still felt I was in her tummy because all the sounds around me were distant and muffled. Everyone thought I was such a good baby because I slept soundly, even surrounded by noise and in the evenings my parents often took me out in my big blue pram to friends houses or restaurants .

My first paediatrician was a famous Parisian doctor who thought I was in great health. I underwent all the routine tests normally requested by paediatricians, especially when they know nothing about newborn deafness, and declared that I was in perfect health, adding that “before the age of 3 we cannot assess a child’s hearing”.

At 3 months we set off to Argentina where several paediatricians also professed that I was a healthy, international baby, slightly behind with my speech due to my multilingual family. As for me, I couldn’t hear much, people looked at me moving their lips, but I just assumed it was like that when you were a baby and I was able to get my parents and friends to understand me....then...

Back in France I started a nursery where I had lots of fun but I noticed that the staff seemed annoyed with me, moving their lips, looking at me and I couldn’t understand what they wanted from me. Often this happened just before lunch or our walk and I quickly worked out what I needed to do was to follow the other children , that seemed to please the staff.... time was spent happily between France and Argentina....

However, one day, when my Mummy came to pick me up, the head of the French nursery talked to her for a long time and soon after we went to see a man who looked in my ears and made me play with a tv screen which lit up as he tapped on a keyboard. I quickly understood that as he moved his hand and I turned my head towards him, he made Barbar and other characters appear on the screen, which was very funny and amused him.

After we played a lot, he gave my parents, who seemed very relaxed, a big smile, we went home and Mummy drew a picture on a big piece of paper of Daddy with his panama hat, Mummy with a big tummy next to me.

A few weeks later, I was 2 then, I saw another man who again let me play with some television screens that lit up now and again, if I looked at them at the right moment, and again my parents looked relieved. This time, when we got home, on the picture there was Daddy, Mummy, me and a little baby.

Mummy, started surprising me more and more at home, closing doors, appearing from behind curtains, moving her lips as she stared at me, hiding behind me and clapping. Often I saw the silhouette of her shadow and would turn around, other times I could feel the floorboards move and I knew she was there or I could feel her breath near my face and I would try to guess what she wanted by following her look or the movement of her hands. All was okay and I was getting used to a world where silence was taking over.

Finally, one day, at siesta time, we went to see a lady in Marly- Le –Roi who placed some wiring on my head before. I went to sleep and when I woke up Mummy was crying and Daddy had the same look as when he had been stopped for speeding coming back from Germany.

As for me , I had known already for a long time that I couldn’t hear anything, and that the other children possessed a sense which I didn’t have; now my parents also knew.

This time, it was me who was relieved.

I was 2 years and 8 months old.

On arriving home they bend over Alex’s cot , my little brother who was just 3 months old, mummy took him in her arms, hugged him and let out a big sigh, just as she did at the end of a tiring day.

From that moment, we stopped going to Argentina regularly and, with Alex, we started our real life of bilingual , French- German deaf children, receiving a cochlear implant, then a second implant, but....let’s wait and see.

Courtesy of Antoine Raymond and Tania Schultz, parents of Adrien

Show your support: Destiny of a Child relies on the generosity of people like you to fund its work amongst profoundly deaf children, physically disabled children and Aids orphans.

Adrien Raymond & Alexandre

Registered Charity: 1096499. Registered in England and Wales.
© 2010 Destiny of a Child. All Rights Reserved. 1 Park Lane, Sevenoaks Kent, TN13 3UP