A few years ago, I was recovering from a severe respiratory infection, sinus infection, and ear infection. This cocktail of infection had also caused me to get laryngitis. I basically felt like I was dying.
For some reason, I had a craving for Chinese food. I drove down to a local Chinese restaurant and was trying to place an order. I couldn’t speak, so I was using hand jesters to communicate with the server.
To make things worse, the server had a very strong accent. I am hearing impaired, so the accent mixed wth my hearing impairment, which was made worse by an ear infection, made it extremely difficult to understand what he was saying.
I lady in the restaurant was watching all this and decided to help. She told the server, “I think she’s deaf.” The lady knew a little sign language and tried to communicate with me.
I am fluent in American Sign Language and I was getting frustrated with my whole situation, so I went with it. I pretended to be deaf and started signing to the lady. She then communicated what I said to the server and I was able to get my food.
I admit to feeling a bit ashamed of my actions that day. However, sometimes you just have a craving for Chinese food and you do what you got to do.
I thought this poem was beautiful, so I decided to share it.
Do the angels sing in Heaven, Lord?
Will I hear music there?
Or must I stand in a corner
While others join in prayer?
While I wonder what they’re saying Lord,
As oft I do down here?
Must I sit in lonely stillness
While the bells ring loud and clear?
Can I read your lips in Heaven, Lord
Will I be brushed aside,
And stick my hands in pockets
Because of wounded pride?
Will all the saints there praise Thee,
While I in silence wait?
Will someone up in Heaven
Help me through the gate?
Then God, who loves the humble,
Whispered in the poor deaf ear
My child, has no one told you,
There is no silence here.
Hold out your hands, my little one,
For Heaven all to see.
We’ve heard them pray so many times,
Each prayer reached up to Me.
See, all the angels waiting.
The gates are open wide.
Your crown of life awaits you,
And I shall be your guide.
I have a song to give you,
You’ll sing both loud and clear.
And the song you sing, my dear one,
Will be the sweetest song up here.
-Doris Isbell Crowe, 1955
I was in CVS and a women tapped me on my shoulder. She pointed to my hearing aids and asked if I was deaf (using sign language and her voice). I responded back (speaking and signing), “No. I am not deaf; I am hard of hearing.”
The lady told me about her granddaughter. The child was born with a hearing impairment and the women was afraid of how it would affect the child’s life. She asked me about my hearing problems. If I was able to go to college and if I was able to work.
I told her I was born with an inner ear deformity that caused me to lose my hearing at a very young age. I had a series of operations to help fix the deformity and to prevent anymore loss of hearing.
I told her I did go to college, I have a Master’s degree, and a good job. Basically, I did well even though I am hearing impaired.
I gave her information on local resources that could help by teaching the family sign language, provide assistive hearing devices, finding professional speech therapist, and anything else they may need.
The women thanked me and was in tears when she left the store. I believe she felt hopeful for her grandchild.
I believe that little girl is achieving her full potential today.