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July 4, 2003

Sounds like a great, big, noisy world

From: Brisbane Courier Mail, Australia - Jul 4, 2003

Louise Crossen

FOR most parents, the milestones in their baby's life are simple – first step, first word, first birthday.

Matthew and Tina Worland have waited six months for one of the most important. Like her big brother Darcy, Claudia Rose was born profoundly deaf.

Three weeks ago, she was Queensland's youngest cochlear implant recipient, and yesterday audiologists at the Hear and Say Centre turned the device on, testing Claudia's hearing range with a series of sound stimuli.

Tina and Matthew were outwardly calm. As the tests began however, the tension started to show – both parents hunched forward in their seats, looking intently for signs of comprehension in Claudia.

After their daughter responded for the first time, both broke into huge grins and applause.

The Worlands admit their experience this time around is in marked contrast to Darcy's implant five years ago.

"It's different to last time," Tina said. "I'm just so happy and excited for her – last time we were both really anxious and there were floods of tears."

Matthew says he is a "little bit more relaxed" second time round.

"We've got living, walking talking proof that it works," he said, catching Darcy on his umpteenth circuit around the waiting room.

The Worlands were aware they had a high chance of having another deaf child, but said having a playmate for Darcy was more important than their concerns.

"We knew we could do it, and this time it would be so much easier – we've got an extra helper with Darcy around. Now our only fear is that Claudia will be just as noisy as him!"

© Queensland Newspapers