Leave it up to a child to remind us to be thankful for a natural ability most of us take for granted: A 3-year-old’s priceless face was captured on video as he reacted to hearing his father’s voice for the first time. Thanks to a microchip that University of North Carolina doctors implanted inside the child’s brain, Grayson Clamp–who was born deaf–was finally able to hear his father say “Daddy loves you.” He is the first child in the U.S. to receive the implant, which had previously only been approved for adults.
As explained by Dr. Sanjay Gupta in the CNN video above, the young boy received the auditory brain stem implant as part of an ongoing Food and Drug Administration (FDA) trial. This was the second attempt at restoring Clamp’s hearing: Doctors had previously performed a standard cochlear implant, a device embedded into the side of his skull, but without the life-changing effect, since Clamp was born without a cochlear nerve, which helps the brain process the signals transmitted by the ears.
Although it is clear that Grayson hears something in the video, it’s not yet clear how much he senses. “We don’t know exactly what it’s like for him. We don’t know what he hears–if he hears everything we do. His brain is still trying organize itself to use sound,” Clamp’s mom tells local station WBTV.