“Being a hearing impaired/deaf person has its challenges, but I never let them get in the way.”
Discovering Hearing Loss
Kelsey was born with her hearing loss. It wasn’t until she was placed in foster care at 2 years old that she received her first pair of hearing aids. Her foster parents helped Kelsey and both of her biological brothers receive hearing aids as soon as they were placed with them. Hearing loss runs in her biological family, so Kelsey and her brothers were tested at a young age. Prior to entering foster care, Kelsey was battling many health conditions. Now with her current guardians, Kelsey and her siblings continue to get their hearing evaluated every year and continue to care for their hearing loss.
Importance of Better Hearing
Because of Kelsey’s health concerns, she has been participating in the Virtual Academy that her county offers for the last three years. She is grateful for her hearing aids because they allow her to connect directly to her computer through Bluetooth. She is now able to hear clearly and at a volume that is comfortable for her. She especially loves being able learn about science and participate in the experiments.
Kelsey started cheerleading a couple years ago and being able to have hearing aids that cut out the background noise has helped her tremendously. They allow her to focus on her coaches and only hear what she is supposed to be doing. In addition to cheerleading, Kelsey also does gymnastics, enjoys photography, art, and listening to music. Her hearing aids help her enjoy the world around her even on rough days.
“My favorite part of being able to hear better is music. I love all kinds of music. It lifts my spirits and makes me in a better mood if I am down or tired. Music is my therapy. To dance around and sing can lift anyone’s spirits!”
Why Kelsey is a HearStrong Champion
Kelsey is a HearStrong Champion because she never lets challenges get in her way. Her positivity allows her to look on the bright side of whatever she is dealt. She believes that being hearing impaired comes with its perks, like being able to turn off her hearing aids to drown out the world if she needs to and being used to talking louder helps her cheering be heard on the field. Just like her role model, Tia Stokes, despite all of her medical diagnoses she still finds a way to get up and dance even on a really hard day. She is a strong and inspiring role model who isn’t afraid to teach others how her hearing aids help her.
“I want girls/kids out there to know that no matter what life has dealt you, you can be a Champion at what you do. Don’t let others doubts define you. You are strong enough, capable enough, and smart enough to take on whatever is on your path. Keep fighting to be the best you there is, because there is only one you and you are perfect just how you were made.”