“Were you on MTV?”
This question still shocks me to this day. It’s been probably almost about 10 years since it aired. How do people still remember me?
It is probably an interesting story? No? Maybe? It still blows my mind this happened.
It was so random. I came across a deaf newsletter I used to get weekly. Remember those MTV True Life episodes? They were looking for deaf individuals. Long story short, I shared my story that I was about to audition for an NFL cheerleading team and next thing you know the film crews were here.
What is going on?! What am I supposed to do? Why did I respond to that darn newsletter? Why did they pick me? Why me? I had no clue how I was going to continue to go to my classes, go to my pom squad practice, do homework, hang with my friends and get ready for an audition with a camera in my face constantly.
I had no problem being in the stage spot light growing up but when you’re faced in front of cameras that follows your every move and words…shit, that was a daunting process. It was unnerving because I curse a lot and felt like I really had to keep to myself.
Face it. It’s a reality show where you expose such a vulnerable part of your life. I hate crying in front of people. Who does? I really thought they weren’t going to air the show. It was a possibility. Either they were going to replace my character with another person or not air anything all together. I didn’t feel good about how I did presenting myself. My story wasn’t that great.
I had a lot of mixed responses. Some great, some not so great. Some were inspired and some were disgusted.
Why not so great?
I’m deaf with hearing aids using oral speech and don’t use sign.
It still poses a problem today. What people think I should be doing…whether is to stop using oral speech or get cochlea implants or blah blah blah and the list can go on…is their issue. And most importantly, none of their god darn business.
The whole point of having the opportunity to be on MTV’s True Life was to show I’m just like many of you. Striving to find her place, over coming huge obstacles daily, that anybody, ANYONE, can achieve what they want to do and just BELIEVE.
It did open doors for me and opened my eyes to a world of bigger possibilities that I never thought I’d be in today.
Full episode below.