Where Are You From?

Where are you from?

It’s a very common question.

I’ll explain and I usually get “Oh…that makes sense” reply. Does it really? Because you just made a judgmental call when you asked me where I’m from. I’m not from England. Or Germany. Or Australia. I was born deaf, in America. You can give me the stares all day long.

In reality, the looks and questions you ask us can make us insensitive when we can do nothing about the way or how we use our voice or even answer your questions that you have no idea what you’re talking about.

Here’s another. “Why don’t you sign?”

It’s a choice. I actually do know American Sign Language. But why don’t you sign? Oh wait you don’t know how to. Hahaha. So here I am speaking English with an “accent”. A language I worked so hard on for 9 years. Wait no. All my life. Exclamation point.

I’m going to be real blunt here for a minute. Who needs a class on Latin language in High School when they should offer American Sign Language? Don’t get me wrong Latin is great if you want to be an expert on dead languages. But do it in college. Okay, please don’t kill me. Here me out. Who speaks Latin these days? Okay, it is a beautiful language and it’s like poetry. But ASL is a beautiful language as well. ASL is perfect. Not to mention how EASY it is to learn. It provides community within the community of hearing loss. No barriers, no awkward stares, no awkward communications, no writing down on note pads, no yelling at us, no super-slow-speaking-just-so-we-can-understand-you-sh!t and ecetera ecetera!

Just be a decent human.

32

Today, I’m passing along 32 wisdom I’ve learned along the way. I’m grateful for all that I’ve seen, where I’ve been, and where I’m going. Especially where I am today.

  1. Smile often – It will make people wonder about you.
  2. Chase that dream – Whatever you’ve been thinking about for a long time, just go for it. It’s not handed to you, you have to work for it.
  3. Drink lots of water – It’s so good for you.
  4. Respect others – Regardless of the differences. Try it.
  5. Treat others the way you would want to be treated – I cannot stress this enough! Put yourself in their shoes too! Kindness goes a long way.
  6. Lift heavy weights – The best body toning, feel good endorphins, stress reliever on earth.
  7. People won’t always like you and that’s okay – Brush it off and walk away as hard it may be. Refer to #1, keep smiling.
  8. Hold yourself to the highest standard – Really respect yourself.
  9. Rescue is the best breed – When you rescue a dog, you open up a spot in the animal shelter to save another life.
  10. Always see the good in others – Despite the differences, you may not always see eye to eye but always see the good and smile about them.
  11. Travel far and wide – Traveling will make you an incredibly more well-rounded human being.
  12. Wash your face every night – And don’t forget your sunscreen during the day!
  13. Keep your meals real, whole and nutritious – I continuously keep learning about the food I eat and how it treats my body!
  14. Also, enjoy treats because…balance – Dairy-free or not!
  15. Bravely accept your imperfections, your flaws – Strive for growth, instead of perfection.
  16. It’s okay to be vulnerable – Being vulnerable makes you who you are.
  17. Be unapologetically YOU – Keep shining like a diamond.
  18. Recognize that your inner beauty conquers all – Stay true to yourself.
  19. Take pictures of everything – Life goes by fast, you only live once, and stop the time with a picture.
  20. Do the things you’re scared to do – And don’t let people tell you otherwise.
  21. Focus on the present, not the past – I struggle with this often! But learning to focus on today, not what happened yesterday!
  22. Laughter is the best medicine – Keep a sense of humor and don’t take yourself so seriously.
  23. Weight is simply JUST A NUMBER – It’s always just a number, your health is your most valuable asset.
  24. Never take your body for granted – I still have a lot to learn in terms of the food I eat and working out has me learning that my body is capable in many ways I never imagine.
  25. Learn to fail and accept failure – Mistakes are what makes you who you are.
  26. Always say “I love you” – Period.
  27. Stop assuming what others think of you – It’s none of your business.
  28. Don’t compare yourself to others – You have no idea what’s behind closed doors.
  29. Enjoy life – Show up and make the most of it.
  30. There is nothing to hold you back – Except yourself.
  31. Don’t let your disability define who you are as a person – Even though it may seem like denying the power and overwhelming significance of the experiences in my life, you’re not insulting yourself, not weak, not asking for sympathy. You’re you. See the person first, disability second.
  32. Be a decent human.

Medical Devices for the Deaf/HOH

I’m going to share what devices are helpful for the deaf and hard of hearing community that work in the healthcare field. This goes for ANYONE, elderly including. I mean you can basically google it. Just kidding, I’ll help you out here. Here’s what I know that can assist you in many ways possible.

Clear mask – I don’t believe these are on the market yet.  There’s a pre-order link. I know so many of us would benefit from it, especially if there isn’t an interpreter available or your own friends or family to help you.

Amplified stethoscope – There’s even a Bluetooth option that connects to your phone so you can play it back.

Automatic Blood Pressure Cuff – This was similar to what I was able to use in hygiene school in lieu of regular stethoscope and blood pressure cuffs like this.

Speak-See device – For meetings and dinner conversations. This company is fairly new and pre-orders already have begun for release early 2019. I also wrote a blog about it as well.

CapTel Phones – These days, most offices still require phone calls to make appointments or bill payments and such. The list could go on. There are foundations that will give you assisted devices for free such as here.

Apps for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing – There’s plenty of apps you can add to your phone to assist you in daily life.

I have InnoCaption App on hand if my husband isn’t authorized to help me with a credit card or similar issue. I haven’t been able to use it in a while as most companies are communicating via emails and online chat! This could be something you may need to use on your cellphone as an entrepreneur medical professional.

Now, this may be off topic but if we can get closed captioning on screen in movie theaters, that would be even a better movie night out! It’s 2018 right? Just saying…