Saturday, December 30, 2006

Life throught their eyes.

I was over at Chaotic Home just now where she spoke of seeing life through the eyes of her deaf boys.

I realised that it's been a loooooooong time since I wrote of something that relates to our ministry here with the deaf. We've still been active in it . . . our lives cross pretty much daily . . . but that's what it has become to us, normal, daily, routine stuff.

And yet at the same time, it's not.

Chaotic Mom said that "They are 'normal'. They just communicate differently."


My thought drifted to my co-worker, and good friend Virginia. We've known each other since we were young and single. She's deaf. She and I were roommates when I first volunteered at Rancho Sordo Mudo, school for the deaf. They were so short staffed at that time that they were doubling up the duties so that the dorm parents were teachers. That was Virginia. That was exhaustion.

I went willing to do whatever was needed. I went down only knowing my "ABC"'s, that's about it! I showed up and -*boom*- the dorm parents took off. They needed a break and I was the baby-sitter! There were about 8 girls at the time and I learned real quick the signs "No!", "Sit down!" and "Go to bed!".

It's one of the best ways to learn sign language. It's called the "sink or swim" method. That and then Virginia would pull me aside almost nightly after the girls were in bed, after the school work and preparations were done and she would force have me interpret Star Trek-of all things!-for her. (The Next Generation . . . for all you Trekkie's out there!)

You explain what a "time warp continuum" is, not to mention Klingon's and Borg and "Q", in sign language when you just got down how to ask where the bathroom is.

I know that Virginia doesn't think of herself as different. Just deaf - kind of like the same way she thinks of herself as Mexican, or brunett, or a woman . . . being deaf is just a part of who she is. The way God made her.

More later.


Chaotic Mom said...

I am so crying right now. Sitting here crying. You hit the nail on the head. YOU are an amazing woman. ;)

kellygirl said...

Yes, like a persons personality. Yet it is the one thing that separates them from the world in a way that no one can visually see. It is what invisibly places them in another world. You know I speak this from my heart because of my husband. The string that holds the deaf together.. is their ability to communicate. And that is what brings them to the hearing world visibly.

sarahgrace said...

I've learned a lot from you sharing your insights into your ministry. Thanks for sharing...and I can't imagine trying to explain "time warp continuum"-that's one of those things from Star Trek I just accepted instead of tried to understand myself...ha ha ha..

Cece said...

That is a great post. It gave me a different look on the deaf population. Very nice, thanks.

On a different note, I was looking in your bio for an email address to contact you but didn't see one, did I miss it? I wanted to ask you a few questions about Ensenada but I didn't want to clog up your comment area. If you get a chance, will you email me at Thanks!

Rachael said...

I teach at a school in Mexico for children whose families couldn't afford to send them to school otherwise. I'd like to learn more about this ministry. Sounds like it's right up our alley.