Netflix’s Deaf U Thoughts

This show has been interesting to say in the least. I first heard of the show coming out a month prior. It was circulating on social media and the trailer looked so good. It seemed to showcase deaf struggles in the real world.

WRONG.

Reason #1 – It’s a bunch of college kids attending Gallaudet University in Washington DC. For some of us that went to college sure do know all about the college lifestyle. There seem to be a lot of drama within the characters. The group they casted somehow seem to be two-faced. Also, sleeping around with talks of getting another person pregnant on purpose? I get it. BUT it’s not something I’d want my daughter to watch and learn about my world.

Reason #2 – It’s not a very good representation of us who are deaf or hard of hearing in the real world. “Do you all act like that?” NO. The reality is there are major differences on the deaf spectrums. The hearing may like it because it’s giving them interesting “perspectives”. I wished the show showed more struggles in real life. For example, what the classrooms are like, what’s studying like, what is it like to work, be around other hearing people, etc.

Reason #3 – The episodes are very short. Not sure why but I wished they elaborate more on their lives rather than being drama and sex focused. It is a documentary and showcased real stories. There were interesting perspectives in different episodes. There were very brief stories of molestations, abortion, LGTBQ, family, relationships, etc, OUTSIDE of their college life.

On the plus side, the end of the last episode gave me all the feels. I can relate to one character named Cheyenna. She’s deaf and uses sign but also words it out with her lips. Some of her friends didn’t like that. She chooses not to use oral speech. It’s just a choice of hers but it’s not good enough for her peers. The deaf culture is separated into different groups. It can be very hateful and discriminating. It’s part of why I didn’t want to attend Gallaudet. I use oral speech and am always questioned by the deaf community about why I don’t express with my hands. How I shouldn’t use my mouth to communicate. How I shouldn’t be wearing hearing aids and be cut off from the hearing world. No matter what I do, it’s not good enough. It’s a very constant state of feeling inferior. Using oral speech is a CHOICE I chose to use. I’ve learned ASL different stages of my life and even teach my 9 month old daughter to use it.

No matter what your choices are, be a better self advocate. Educating others is a constant work in progress. Keep going. Be you. And always be kind to others.

34

For the last two years, I would share wisdom I’ve learned on my birthday. ( Link to past wisdom 33 & 32 )

2020 has been a roller coaster. I simply have no words for it. It’s taught me more patience and grace than the last two years.

This year, we welcomed a beautiful baby girl, lived nearly the first two months of 2020 in the hospital, and a pandemic happened as soon as we came home.

I’m continuously and constantly grateful for the little blessings. I’m sharing some old and new wisdom this year.

  1. Make room in your heart for the unimaginable. Always believe in miracles.
  2. Do what scares you and push yourself outside of the box.
  3. Have a grateful heart. Life is too short and precious to take things for granted.
  4. There’s always a silver lining. See it through.
  5. It’s okay to be vulnerable. This year has it’s challenges.
  6. Take pictures. Always. Be notorious for random ones. They’re the best.
  7. Never stress on the tiniest stuff. Let it go and see what kind of magic returns in its place.
  8. Keep a gift of wisdom behind you and seek the meaning to everything.
  9. Don’t give up on your dreams just because you are a mom. Let that be your motivation.
  10. Do take care of your mental health.
  11. If someone tells you you’ve changed, celebrate it and keep going.
  12. Keep exploring and see what the world has to offer. While this might be on hold for a while, more research and saving for us!
  13. Keep your vision board in sight.
  14. Technology is amazing. Keep in touch with your friends and family near and far. Always keep them close to your heart.
  15. Do take social media breaks. In fact, take several.
  16. Be passionate about something bigger than yourself. It inspires growth.
  17. Know that there is always light out of the darkness. Whatever rock bottom you hit, the top is just waiting for you to shine. When the time is right.
  18. I truly believe everything happens for a reason. It will always work out because it’s meant to be. When it doesn’t, know that there’s always something bigger for you, just need to close the door for the next one to open.
  19. Always remind yourself how far you’ve come. Be proud of the fact that you’re taking the path that was paved for you.
  20. Please floss. Daily.
  21. Never let grief take over and always choose hope.
  22. Let mean people be mean. Life has a way of bringing them into your life to challenge you and make you a better person out of it.
  23. Always trust your dog when it doesn’t like a person. For real.
  24. Kindness always goes a long way. Treat others how you would want to be treated.
  25. 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.
  26. Aspire to inspire others. Whether it’s sharing your story or smiling for no reason.
  27. Trust your gut.
  28. Remember the way people treat you is a statement about who they are as a human being. Refer to #22.
  29. Be picky about vibes and energy you surround yourself with. You owe yourself that much.
  30. Sarcasm and cursing is always okay in my book. Keep being you.
  31. Keep smiling. I mean it. It’s always a good day when you see others smile.
  32. You are not required to house someone else’s feelings. Take it easy on yourself.
  33. Always love and love hard.
  34. Be thankful for roadblocks. Some things are just not meant to be.

Deaf Awareness Week

Happy Deaf Awareness Week! Below are articles I’ve published recently!!

How the Deaf Can Pursue a Career in Dental Hygiene