Baby hearing mom's voice for the first time captured in emotional video

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A mother who has been raising awareness about pediatric hearing loss and American Sign Language has shared a touching video of her baby hearing her voice for the first time.

Christina Pacala uploaded a 39-second clip of the emotional moment she shared with her newborn Riley to TikTok earlier this month, and she made sure to let her followers know that hearing aids are just an option and not a “fix.”

“I debated on whether to post this video of my deaf daughter hearing for the first time,” Pacala explained in her video. “Hearing aids are not some magical ‘fix’ for deaf people. Deaf people don’t need to be fixed. They’re just a tool to access sound. But, this was a pretty special moment for us.”

Pacala’s video has been viewed more than 949,000 times and thousands of TikTok users have issued praise for the inclusive space the Pacala family is building for Riley.

“My husband and I welcomed our beautiful baby girl, Riley, into the world in October 2020,” Pacala told Fox News. “Shortly after Riley’s birth through a series of tests with an audiologist, we learned that Riley is deaf. We’ve made it our goal to give Riley access to as many tools as possible to help her communication and development – that includes giving her access to both American Sign Language, and spoken English.”


The video of Pacala and Riley was taken a year ago. Riley was fitted for hearing aids five weeks after her birth, and the video shows little Riley go through a series of emotions while Pacala lets her know how much she’s loved.

Christina Pacala shared a touching video of her daughter Riley hearing her voice for the first time in an emotional TikTok video.
(Christina Pacala)

“Riley hearing our voices for the first time was a special moment for us, and it’s been fun to share that, and many other special moments, too,” Pacala said. “Like Riley taking her first steps, Riley’s first signs and our family learning American Sign Language together.”

Not all parents are willing to learn sign language, the American Society for Deaf Children reports. These stats play a role in Pacala’s desire to give Riley options.

“Riley is a smart, happy, and very energetic child,” Pacala told Fox News. “She loves playing with blocks and baby dolls, listening to music, and signing bedtime stories with her father each night. We’re excited to be able to share our journey, and hope to help people understand that deaf kids can do absolutely anything.”

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