A blind mom heard her son’s first smile. Wait, what?
Kristen Witucki was a new mother, learning the ropes alongside her husband, with an added twist; both of them were blind. Nurses at the hospital had been skeptical of their ability to care for a baby, but Kristen and husband James kept enough friends and family rotating through her room to make them confident that the baby was in good hands.
The baby boy’s name was Langston, and his parents, James and Kristen Witucki, were determined to be the best parents possible in spite of their disability.
According to the Huffington Post, James and Kristen had taken Langston home, and she had to teach her husband how to feel his way through changing a diaper:
“When you put the diaper on. the two pieces of tape always need to be under the baby so that you can close the diaper from the back.”
Kristen’s mother had taken a picture of the event, and, as much as Kristen wanted her her to stay, Kristen knew that it was her turn to be the mom and had to deal with it. Her mom offered words of encouragement after taking the picture:
“…don’t worry, I won’t post it on Facebook. I’m going to head home now. You two seem like you’ll be okay on your own.”
Kristen Witucki’s mother leaving was just the beginning of her immersion into the isolation of privacy. Kristen spent days with the knowledge that screaming down the hall would only gain echoed answers.
Langston had been born at the end of November, and, thanks to the holiday season, family and friends were often too busy to help Kristen more than taking pictures of her son and posting them on Facebook for her. Kristen was grateful for that much.
James had gone back to work after Langston was seven weeks old, and the isolation grew. Knowing she was a blind mom only made her feel less adequate. Kristen had taken refuge in the advice and aid of BabyCenter.com, which had informed her that the first positive results of her determination and insomnia were paying off.
An email from the website had announced that Langston’s smiles were about to come.
Kristen felt her loneliness seeping into Langston and had to do something. She grabbed a video recorder and started singing to him, at which point, Langston started singing back, mostly in vowels, but it was enough. During the recording session, apparently Langston had smiled for the first time. Posting it on Facebook, she now had a recording of her son smiling that she could listen to any time.
And with that, her journey to motherhood felt that much closer to complete.
Did the story of a blind mom hearing her son’s first smile inspire you?
— Michael Gobo (@michaelgobo) March 1, 2013