Seconds before the implant is turned on, Jonathan rests peacefully in his mothers arms. The implant is turned on – and Jonathan, hearing his mothers voice for the first time, turns to her, his dummy dropping from his mouth as it opens in amazement. An incredulous smile of joy spreads across the babys face as his mother asks him: Did you hear that, Jonathan. An overjoyed Jonathan stretches back in delight as the doctor says: Thats what we call an early Christmas present
Gurgling in a mix of wonder and joy, this is the incredible moment a child hears his mother’s voice for the first time. Eight-month-old Jonathan was born deaf and had cochlear implants put into his ears so he could hear. His father filmed the tear-jerking moment they were turned on for the first time, capturing the amazement in the boy’s face as he heard his mother’s voice saying his name. The clip has become a YouTube sensation with 1.4million views, mostly in the last few weeks.
In the clip a man thought to be one of the doctors can be heard saying that the implants are being turned on, adding: ‘Here we go’.
His blonde mother is seen holding her son in her arms and staring at him and saying: ‘Hi Jonathan! Hi! Could you hear that?’ His dummy drops from his mouth as he opens it in astonishment, then starts to gurgle as a smile lights up his face. His thrilled mother, a smile beaming across her face also, adds: ‘Hi sweetie. Could you hear that?’
‘You got that Dad, right’, a doctor asks the man filming, to which the father replies: ‘Uh-huh’.
‘We call that a late Christmas present. That’s really good’, adds the doctor.
The clip was uploaded by a user called ‘beancounterbb’ and is part of a set of three that show the cochlear implants being tested. Although filmed two years ago, they have now gone viral, sparking a wave of empathy from astonished YouTube viewers. Typical was a comment from Lapsmon, who wrote: ‘Wonderful. Beautiful. Amazing. Absolute tear-jerker’.
Skybird 1956 wrote: ‘This touched my heart’ and Simkabuki added: ‘That was just magical’.
Cochlear implants are surgically implanted electronic devices that give a sense of sound to somebody who is profoundly deaf or hard of hearing. Older children and adults who receive the device still need therapy to process sounds, but babies like Jonathan are more likely to develop speech at a normal rate.
More than 112,000 people worldwide have received cochlear implants.