She knelt on the hardwood floor, examining the cardboard pieces scattered in front of her.
Finley needed a few more pairs that fit together to complete the puzzle – a 24-piece box set that showed Minnie Mouse in a pink polka dot dress holding a microphone in the air.
She leaned forward to grab a piece, her wavy-haired ponytails swinging toward her forehead and exposing the cochlear implants attached underneath.
“I got one, I got one,” she squealed, holding up two pieces.
“Good job, baby,” her mom, Madeline replied.
As a toddler, there was no noise to distract her. No sound of someone calling her name, a television show or song to shift her focus.
“We’d sang her a million-and-one songs trying to put her to bed or rock her to sleep at night, and she’d never heard any of it,” Madeline said. “She’d never even heard us say, ‘I love you.’”