I have story for you, please read this entire passage. I was reflecting last night on my progress learning ASL and taking ownership of my past. I’m really proud of myself. I’m proud to identity as a deaf and hard of hearing person on this planet. I want to connect with and help our community. I also want to help in between those spaces, and help the hearing understand what it is like to be both deaf with-out hearing aids, and severely hard of hearing when wearing them. To share and understand what that is like and how communication can be improved between those communities. I believe that we can create creative new forms of communicating and expressing ourselves. It’s an incredible space to be in. I have so, so, so much to learn. I’m a little impatient too, I want to learn ASL faster, and believe me, I am practicing diligently, but I know the reality of learning anything new. It takes time, practice, patience and a lot of compassion. Did I say compassion? Especially if you already beat yourself up for 40 years about rejecting and not learning something that you knew deep down was good for you. I’m forgiving myself for that, slowly, but I am.
Here is the interesting part, I heard a knock at my door last night. Not the door on my apartment, but an inner knock to a doorway inside of me. It was a new door. I approached it and opened it. Standing there was fear itself. It took the form of my own silhouette, it was dark and fluid. I searched for a face but there was only the swirling movement of its darkness. It felt familiar yet an emotional detachment was evoked. Before I could ask, “it”, my own fear asked me, “may I come in?” At that very moment I knew why it was there. There was an otherness feeling to this visit. It was a direct contrast to the past series of visits. It was not a routine visit that would usually show up ferociously and barge in causing havoc, insecurity and frustration. This took me by surprise in the opposite way. I asked my fear, “would like to have a seat?” Swiftly, it said no, “I will not be here long”. I felt myself growing larger as my fear diminished. I told my fear that I’m happy that it came, and that this was our goodbye. It nodded in agreement. The fear of being deaf and hard of hearing was no longer something I needed to hold onto or allow it to trigger its outdated feelings and patterns. My fear itself knew it had been replaced with something much bigger. Love, acceptance, ownership and compassion.
Forward I go.