Janet and Daniel Moreno have both lost their hearing, but this hasn't stopped them from raising their two sons, who can live with clear sounds. Their family life is full of adventures, and both parents managed to overcome all challenges while looking after their sons and making sure they have everything they need.
The time when they were babies was the most difficult since they had to use monitors to know when they were crying. The flashes and the pillow vibrations helped them connect to everything their babies needed, and they even made it to where they could teach them how to say '"bye-bye" despite a "deaf accent."
What are the details?
Daniel and Janet both studied design, and they first met at a graduation party in a friend's apartment.
"He came with a mutual friend. I saw him; first, I think. I saw him coming in from the corner of my eye. One of my friends was trying to tell me something, so I didn't want to be rude and just look away to see who had walked in, you know?! Anyway, so he walked in, and he seriously just looked around the room and then walked straight to me," Janet shared with The Epoch Times.
Even though she was engaged at that time, Janet ended that relationship, and the following summer, she and Daniel started going out.
"We are followers of Christ, and we simply meshed well together. You just know it when you find your person," Janet said.
Their connection has kept growing since then, and today they can easily communicate by just looking at each other. However, when they are among people who can hear, things can change quickly because not everyone is willing to write down what they want to tell them.
"It bugs me sometimes that people, in general, refuse to write things down and would prefer just to have me dismissed rather than dealing with me. It gets hurtful at times, but it does happen. However, there are times where people are kind enough to ask how to sign some words after communicating by using paper or through notes on our iPhones," Janet said.
In the end, all it takes is kindness and plenty of patience.
When the couple found out they would have their first child, they were both very excited and joyful.
"I was extremely overwhelmed with gratitude! I would say a mix of bliss, shock, excitement, and worry. I had faith, and so did Daniel, but sometimes my fear would take over," Janet recalls.
They posted the good news on their social media page and have since updated it with their family's daily adventures.
Janet and Daniel now have two sons, Luke and Jason. Their kids are full of energy and can hear very well, and their parents are grateful to have the chance to share their happiness with the online community.
Janet recently spent a summer with her sister and her niece, and that's how she realized that deaf and hearing parents have similarities but that there are also many differences.
"There are a few times where I noticed I cannot do what she does. She can call out for her daughter and multitask while having a conversation with her. However, I cannot do any of that. I cannot hug my son and have a conversation at the same time. I cannot hear Luke call out for me or vice versa. I cannot chat with him when my hands are full, especially when I cook, wash dishes, or fix his toys," Janet said.
Janet and Daniel always need to make sure their sons give them their full attention, and they can only "talk" to them face to face. Their vocabulary consists of facial expressions, body language, and signing, and there's no way they can be aware of what's taking place in a different room.
"I would have to constantly check on them to make sure everything is okay. Other than that, we as deaf parents are no different than hearing parents," the mother explained.
However, face to face doesn't mean they have to be very close; what matters is that they're all in the same open space.
"I can vacuum the kitchen and talk with them using one hand while my sons are paying attention to me in the living room with their toys. Or when one of us prays, we just keep our eyes open. All in all, they understand how crucial it is for us to be able to see each other," she said.
And when the couple has an argument, shouting is not an option, so they just turn the lights off to get a chance to calm down.
Even though their boys can hear, they still don't realize that many people don't know sign language.
"They don't perceive us as different from other people just yet. It will be very interesting to navigate that once they do!" the mom added.
The Morenos have decided to let their boys explore and find out what sparks their curiosity. They're willing to answer all questions and want to encourage them to feel free and ready to reach any milestone.
"As a stay-at-home mom, I encourage Luke to ask about anything, from God to the world around us. There are no topics off-limits. I encourage him to discover things, like what color will appear if two specific colors are mixed or what happens when he throws a ball down the stairs," Janet shared.
Both parents feel lucky to see them grow and love having their own family despite the daily challenges related to sounds.
"We, as deaf parents, are the gardeners; there's no way we can control everything, but we can give them what they need and watch them blossom! It's all about unconditional love in our home!" Janet said.
They also FaceTime each other quite often to make sure they stay in touch with their boys and also with the rest of their family. They know that some differences will always be there, but constant love and care change their lives daily, and they know that being there for their kids will always make a difference.