Friday, December 24, 2010

A new baby

I remember the first night home as a new mother like it was yesterday. I was terrified. Here was this tiny little creature looking up at me from her cradle in the middle of the night. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing.

I was surrounded by all the comforts a new mother should have, soft little burp cloths, warmers for the wipes, even the cotton blankets were embroidered with Amazing Grace. There was this diaper genie thingamajig that was truly remarkable the way it would carry away soiled diapers.

Mark was sleeping and it was a very silent moment in the middle of a summer night. Gazing at my little daughter, in her cradle...I remember thinking, somehow I'll figure it out and praying a "help me" type prayer. Perhaps this is normal? Kind of a new mom prayer, Dear God, help me figure it out. After the prayer, I remember wondering what my child would do with her life? What kind of person would she be?

What was it like for Mary when Jesus was born? Certainly the comforts were not there and the cradle was a rough, wood thing that was scratchy, the last thing a new mother would want for her newborn child. Can you even imagine the thoughts that Mary was having? She knew this child was going to save all of us...and this beginning, was out of her control.

So, this Christmas Eve, I am thinking about faith. That even when life becomes something very different and unknown, there is a plan for all of us. Just like that blessed Christmas, so long ago when a new mother, not unlike you and me, was chosen to be the one that would bring Him into our world.

My Christmas wish for all of us is this, let us have the kind of faith that Mary had that night long ago and know, that it will be as it should be. Know that when our life is like a scratchy manger, that God is with us and all will be ok. Perhaps this is the real meaning behind Peace on Earth? It is about having peace in our hearts and being thankful.

Silent night...

Friday, December 17, 2010

the sound of my mother's sewing machine

Maybe my mother should consider entering project runway? Her designs dressed both of her daughters all through their childhood. We both won best dressed and it was because of the many hours she would spend working at the sewing machine in the corner of her bedroom.

Mom worked a full time job and yet, she often had a project underway. My childhood memories are marked by the beautiful clothes that she made for events. For the roller skating party in sixth grade, I had bell bottoms with a matching v-neck vest. They had a giant paisley pattern, the height of coolness. For Christmas, a beautiful red velvet dress with white satin cuffs and matching covered buttons down the front. In the summer, I would have pinafore dresses with matching kerchiefs.

High school brought brown corduroy hot pants and dresses for homecoming dances. I remember all too well, the prom dress she made for me. My boyfriend broke up with me three weeks before senior prom. The boy that asked me to go was not "John" and I was so disappointed. Mom made up for it. She bought fabric that had a gold dust sparkle on the surface and a skirt that made me feel like a princess. That was her way of making the night memorable...and it worked. (She never did tell Dad what she spent on the fabric.)

We didn't have the money to shop for clothes in department stores, but the experience of my mom's homemade garments were so much better for many reasons. Together, we would choose a pattern and fabric. Then she would cut it out on the dining room table. Slowly, it would come together as she would run the seams under the presser foot of her sewing machine. RRRRRRRR, snip, cut...I would watch her as she labored by her machine, often at night after working all day.

The picture I posted shows me smiling...most likely at my mom. I had good reasons to smile. These garments were her gift to me as she shared her talent, her time and most of all her love.

I shop for my daughter's clothes in department stores and never once have I found anything that comes close to a Mary Engle original. I wish I had the patience and skill to create from the heart like my mom.

When I was a little girl, watching her sew, I said, "Mom, you are a good maker". How very true and how blessed I am to have a mother that continues to give of her time and talents not just to me, but to all who know Mary Engle.

Merry Christmas Mom. How about whipping up one of those beautiful taffetta christmas blouses for me again?

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A note to the boy who came to the book signing

Dear precious boy,
You came to the book signing in Glen Ellyn this weekend and I didn't get your name. You were accompanied by a woman who served as our interpreter. You were signing and I was lip reading. We are both deaf.

I showed you my hearing aid and tried to explain that I am like you. You smiled at me and nodded your head. You handed me your book to sign and watched me write my name. Then we had a short conversation.

I looked you in the eye and explained slowly and clearly, "when I look at the pictures, I can hear the sounds in my mind." Your interpreter quickly signed these words. You paused for a minute and then with a big smile said, "me, too."

What I want you to know is that nothing will mean more to me than your smile. No matter what happens with the book as the world reviews its contents, your critique means the most.

This book is for you and your journey that lies ahead. Always remember, that what makes us different, is what makes us special in this world. And you are one special person.

Your friend,

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

My big sister

I have always idolized my big sister.

From the time we were small children, I have always done whatever my big sister told me to do. When she went through her "horse" stage, I was her horse. She would make me go under our little play table and she would feed me oats with sugar on them. I would eat them like a horse, complete with neighing, etc.

When we were in my grandfather's vegetable garden, she told me to take a bite of a hot pepper. She told me "you will like this". I should have noticed she had a naughty smile on her face. She enjoyed terrifying me with her "un-nun-nuh" monster chant. We had a special sister hand routine that we did before we went out to see what Santa had brought to us on Christmas morning.

Dad would give us each a bag of M&M's as a treat. I would gobble mine up, she would suck on hers one at a time. Her bag would still be full and mine would be empty. One at a time, she would take out a candy, stick it in her mouth and suck on it, which drove me nuts. She always ended up sharing what was left of her bag, if I howled enough.

I'm sure we had our fights, but it wasn't often. Mostly, it was the younger sister (me) studying the older sister (Deb). I would sit on her bed and watch her apply her makeup. Straightening her curly hair was amazing. She would tape her bangs down at night with this pink stretchy stuff. Then she had to go straight to sleep because her eyes were taped shut. She could wear neon yellow vinyl pants and a pink velour mini dress like a runway model. God, she was gorgeous.

Everything she did was exceptional in my eyes. She had the lead in the school plays, she always had a boyfriend and a knack for making great friends. Deb was so smart. National Merit Scholar, Magna Cum grades were mediocre. But, I didn't care. She was Deb and I was Marty. It was never competitive, it was just sheer adoration.

The years passed and come to think of it, she paved the way for me in so many ways. She taught me how to live in downtown Chicago. She taught me the art of getting a bargain and how to decorate my apartment. She counseled me on the many, many jerks I dated through the years and helped me with just as many heartbreaks.

When I moved to Manhattan, she taught me about ABC carpet, Zabars and where to get a great bagel. She gave me her flash map and her little coin holder for subway tokens. Even though she was in LA, she was never far. She was still my big sister, helping me find my way. I was so lonely in New York and she knew this. Even though money was tight, she sent me this beautiful blouse in a box with a note that said "thought you would like this". She knew I needed a lift and she knew exactly how to do it.

She stood by me when I married Mark. After I had a miscarriage, she cried with me and assured me that everything would be ok. She proved this true when she held my preemie baby daughter. Through the good times and the sad, we are always there for each other. And we have plenty of both.

Life has had many twists and turns for my sister. She was a very successful actress, even played a lead on Broadway. Watching her sign autographs by the stage door, well, how cool is that? But the Broadway actress is now teaching children in the LA Unified school district's drama program. My sister is like a rock star when she comes to the schools, the children adore her. In my eyes, this is the height of her career, where everyday she brings such important learning and inspiration to children that often have nothing.

She has been divorced for many years now, sharing her life with her two teenage daughters. I only wish she was near. That is the one biggest regret that I have with not being able to hear. The sound of my sister's voice, the stream of conversation that has been a guiding lifeline for me. We text, we email, but the conversation is difficult and the distance gets very real when life throws a curve ball.

So, thank you Deb. Thanks for being the perfect big sister. Know that all these years, my admiration and love for you is steadfast. Truly one of life's greatest blessings is the love of a big sister...and all she can teach you about living.

Monday, November 1, 2010

As I celebrate, can't help but think about my Dad

When I was a child, the carnival would come to town. It was a night of magical sounds and colorful lights. My Mom and Dad would take us to this big event on a summer night. All we had to do was walk up the street from the apartments where we lived in Glen Ellyn. It was a huge treat! It was a big deal! My favorite ride was the Tilt-A-Whirl.

Publishing my first book is much like a night at the carnival. I have been looking forward to this day, the official "day" when 100 Sounds to See is a real book. What an exciting day this is!

But can I be honest? What I am really feeling is a tremendous longing for my Dad. My Dad was a gifted man. He was a writer, a singer and community theatre actor. He never ran any companies, or made much money. He lost his scarf and gloves every winter and his car was always a mess. But, he was the perfect father, the perfect protector. He gave me everything I ever needed in this world to be ok.

He made me laugh at his bad jokes and took me to the ball park to watch the Cubs. He shared with me his love of hockey and football and taught me how to skip a rock. He couldn't watch a sad movie and brought my Mother coffee in bed every day of their marriage.

God, I miss him. It has been almost twenty years and I sit here and sob as I write about my Daddy. He would have loved seeing me become an author. If I have any talent at this, it is certainly from Tracy Engle. He was a guy that could write a jingle on command and a poem for any occasion.

So, this day...for me, it is all about you Dad. You always made me believe I could do anything and now I am doing the one thing that I always admired so in you...writing. Now, in your memory, I will stop the tears and start the celebrating! Just like those summer nights so long ago at the Carnival, a huge treat and a big deal!

(image copyright William Huber)

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Why wasn't I bullied as a child?

I have often wondered why I had it so easy with my disability growing up. I could have been the perfect victim. My first hearing aid was actually an amplifier that I wore in the class. I remember sitting there with this giant headset on my head and the kids thought it was so cool. I would pretend that the giant box and head set gave me special powers to communicate with martians. The kids were very impressed.

Then I wore a hearing aid that had wires running down into a little box. My mother made pockets to match my dress. The only problem was the box would slip out of the pocket when I was jumping rope with my friends on the playground. My first behind the ear aid solved that issue. It also was less noticeable.

Is that why I wasn't a victim? Is it because kids might not have known? I think it was my neighborhood that saved me. Yes, it was Apache Lane, where all the children played and loved each other unconditionally. All I had to do was walk out the door and they were there for instant fun. No one seemed to care that my hearing was bad, because I could do a fabulous cartwheel and had a great imagination for when we played ghost in the dark.

We would play hide behind the bushes on summer nights. The game was simply to scoot along the bases of the bushes without being seen by the kid at the top. It was great fun! Pioneers meant dressing up in old cast offs and following our leader, Ronda down the street. If I remember correctly, I was the one who played the part of the expectant mother, giving birth in the wagon on the prairie. This was because I could cry on command.

The years passed and we graduated to shopping together at sidewalk sales and posing together for homecoming pictures. It was a true village where the mothers cared about all of us and the kids were a strong pack. They were more than just my neighbors, they were my protectors.

The years have passed. We all have our own children now and live in different neighborhoods. Thank God I had Apache Lane for my childhood, a place where a disability was a non-issue. My neighborhood kid friends loved me and I loved them. They gave me that sense of acceptance that was enough to last a lifetime.

We didn't have big houses or fancy cars, but what we had was the most important thing of all...neighbors where the doors were always open and love was unconditional. A place where a child could be different and it just didn't matter.

It is so hard for so many children these days, struggling for acceptance, battling depression and often victims of mean behavior. What this world needs is more Apache Lanes to protect and nurture our kids.

My mom still lives in the same house on Apache Lane and when I go to visit her, I tell her that "this place will always feel like home."

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The book is here!

What do you want to be when you grow up? I thought about this on my flight down to
HCI Publishing in Deerfield Beach, Florida. My career was in new products. I can't even count the number of shampoos, conditioners, skin care products, hair color, fixatives, hair spray...literally hundreds of products in my twenty year marketing career I have launched.

I was never bored a minute, I loved my job. I loved the thrill of a new idea, the teamwork, the plans, I loved it all. And then it was over. Yes, the career that turned into a wonderful consulting business, just wasn't going to be a part of my life anymore. Sometimes disabilities can throw a wrench into our lives. My career required listening to phone calls, meetings, focus groups and it was just getting hard. I was missing so much and I knew it. I couldn't be at the top of my game when I couldn't hear.

So, the question, "what do I want to be when I grow up?" How many times in our lives do we get to reinvent ourselves? Sometimes we dream, but for me, it wasn't going to be a dream. It was going to be necessary.

I always wanted to be a writer. I've been writing journals, letters to my daughter, for years. Now, was my chance, to be a real writer. And on that trip down to Florida, I realized, I was not only a writer, I was now a published author.

Thank you to my husband, Mark. Although you never said it, you knew that my heart was breaking when I had to let go of what was and create a new career. I will always be grateful to your guidance, your critique of ideas and your belief that I could do it....and now I have.

100 Sounds to See is a book that I can hold in my hands.

The lesson for me was sometimes when one door closes, another one will open.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

The sounds of my Grandmother's kitchen

Being the city girl I am, many people are surprised to find out that my real roots are on a small farm in North Carolina. Every summer, my family would drive to Watha, to visit my grandparents at "the farm".

My favorite room in the house was the kitchen. It wasn't a big kitchen, no dishwasher, no counter space or fancy appliances. Just a drop leaf kitchen farm table and maple cabinets that went clear to the ceiling. What amazing meals would come out of that hard working kitchen! Cooking is part of living in the south. On the stove, the cast iron skillet got heavy use. In my grandmother's kitchen, the sounds competed with the wonderful smells. Ever hear country ham sizzling? There was a little toaster oven that made slices of bread turn crispy, golden brown. There was the sound of my grandmother stirring dough in the big wooden bowl. I can still see her hands forming those mouth watering biscuits.

There was a big kitchen sink and an oversized faucet that would send steaming water splashing into the dishpan. Outside the kitchen window, you could see wide open fields, with livestock grazing. God, it was beautiful.

About the meals. Back in the early forties, when they farmed tobacco, they had many workers in the field. Part of the "pay" for the men was a big mid-day meal. Dinner was served when the sun was at its peak. The men would sit down to a huge meal that my grandmother prepared. Country ham, biscuits, succotash and sweetened ice tea. Times were tough and this might be the only real food that some of the workers would have to eat. As was customary at the time, she would set two tables, one for the white men and one for the african american men.

Until one day. My grandmother announced to all the men, "I will be setting one table, you will all eat together." Rural North Carolina was very segregated at the time. This was just not done. I can only imagine the reaction from the men. But, if you knew Mary Davis, you knew she meant it. So, the choice, was sit together or go hungry. I'm sure the smell of that country ham won out over any reservations.

Perhaps you have famous people in your family that have accomplishments that make you very proud? Of all the folks in my lineage, no one will ever make me prouder than my grandmother who stood up to segregation, long before anyone had permission to do so. I'm so proud of her.

Little did she know, that in that small country kitchen, she would start a revolution. My only regret, is that I never told her how much I admire her. I can only hope that she is up in heaven...listening to me now.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

The sounds of NYC

I lived in NYC on the upper east side many years ago. I had a tiny apartment with a terrace (gasp) and the entire thing was 500 square feet. It was charming and cozy. Tiny, tiny, tiny. I did not turn on the stove the entire time I lived there. My refrigerator would hold a carton of milk and leftovers from carry out.

Every day I would walk to my office at Clairol/Bristol Meyers at 345 Park Avenue. I lived at 60th and 3rd and my office was at 50th and Park. I loved those walks. So much to see...but the noise! At the time, NYC did not have an ordinance against honking. HONK! The noise was so annoying. HONK! Every time the traffic slowed, the cars would lay on their horns. HONK!

My favorite time of day was Sunday morning at 7am. The city that doesn't sleep, sleeps in on Sunday morning. Yes, a well kept secret, NYC is quiet on Sunday morning. I would pull on a jacket and make my way to the corner to buy the Times. I remember being able to hear the sounds of the businesses sliding open the iron bars that protected their stores. I loved to hear the different languages that the business owners would speak as they greeted their neighbors at the start of the day. I could hear my heels click on the pavement. The swish of the air as it came up from the sidewalk grates. So ordinary, but true New York sounds.

For me, it was a relief. After a week of walking through so much HONKing, the solitude was wonderful...and memorable. When we take the time to notice sounds, we not only hear the sounds, but we seal the memory of a time and place in our memory vault.

My life, so different now. I spend Sunday mornings reading the Chicago Tribune with my husband and the cup of coffee comes out of the carafe in my kitchen (where I do use the stove often). But, I can look back on those days and remember those details because I treasured the rare quiet of an ordinary morning in NYC.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

On vacation, we bought my father-in-law a laptop. Our goal was to get him hooked up with Facebook. He spends many hours alone, caring for my mother-in-law who is now bedridden. Long days pass and he is there by her side. We are concerned, because he is withdrawing, sort of pulling away from life.

Our goal was to teach him about Facebook. For me, Facebook has been fantastic. I can't have detailed phone conversations any longer, so a visit to my FB page brings me up to speed with so many hearing required! The sense of connection to my world, my family, my friends, it brings me such joy. I know it can be a "huge waste of time" as Betty White noted, but it is the idle conversations I miss so much. And I know that my Dad-in-law, Ed, does, too.

We got his page up and running, thanks to our in house FB expert, daughter Gracie. Now, he has "friend requests" pouring in. As he sits in the house by himself, he really isn't alone anymore. When we are far away, I have a way of reaching him, even if it is just a few lines. I can tell him that I adore him, that I miss him.

His profile picture has a big smile, that sort of said it all. It really is remarkable, this thing called Facebook. Waste of time? Sure, but for Ed, it will be a lifeline. Just like that day, many years ago, holding hands with granddaughter Gracie...we all need to be in touch, we need to have a sense of connection to people that love us. So, thank you Facebook.... I think you are a great use of time!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

I would like to tell you about Mr. and Mrs. Hallberg. Even though I am an adult, with a family of my own, they will always be Mr. and Mrs. I wish there was a better title that would give them more importance.

I love the Hallberg family so much. But today, in this post, it is all about Mr. Hallberg.

Where do I start? Perhaps this will explain my relationship the most. He sat next to me the night we buried my Dad and made me feel safe. He was my father's best friend.

Through the years, I have sat at more family dinners with the Hallbergs than I can count. From the time I was a little girl, it was my second home. We didn't have relatives that lived near, the Hallbergs were our extended family.

Mr. Hallberg is blessed with a beautiful singing voice, a vibrant personality and a spirit that pulls all of us together. His conversation is so interesting, so dynamic. He has a laugh that booms and a smile that warms my heart.

In recent years, he was a bit more subdued. I should have known what was happening. But, I just accepted this change, I loved him no matter what. He wasn't participating in the conversation like he used to, still engaged and interested, but didn't say very much.

Recently, I went to visit the Hallbergs and much of the family was there, too. What a great time we were having as we all sat in the living room. Mr. Hallberg was sitting next to me and pointed to both ears. "Look what I have", he said. Inside his ears were two small hearing aids.

He went on to say "I can hear! I can hear conversations, I can hear the TV, the sounds outside. I was missing so much, I had no idea how much, until I could hear again." My Mr. Hallberg was back and it was all because he was no longer isolated by the lonely quiet that comes with the loss of hearing those you love.

If someone you love is fading a bit, don't blame it on age. Please encourage them to try hearing aids, seek help. Because life is not only about living, it is about listening.

Thanks to Granddaughter Lauren for the beautiful picture!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

I have a guinea pig on my grand piano. No, I have not lost my mind. We are babysitting Oreo while her owner is in Europe. Apparently, Oreo has different sounds she makes. My daughter described the sounds, complete with facial expressions.

In the beginning, she had a little growl. She was very unhappy. She makes a little hissing noise when she is fearful. Now she makes a chirp when I bring her cucumbers, her favorite treat. I never knew that these little furry balls have sounds to communicate. Very interesting.

My dog is also very interested in the sounds Oreo makes and since he can't see what is on top of the piano in the cage, he is going a bit nuts.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

the galleys are in for the book!

The fed ex truck rolled up and this great looking guy (I think that is a required trait of fed ex drivers?) gets out and hands me this big package. It's the galleys for the book! I am so excited and nearly hug the guy. He left pretty fast, I think he thought I was nuts.

I've never published anything before, so the reality of this beautiful thing is in my hands. Thank you to William Huber, he did an amazing job photographing sounds. The early reviews and endorsements are all so positive.

I loved creating this book. But, I have to tell you that there were some very emotional moments. God, I miss those sounds. When I was compiling the first list, I sat at my computer and I sobbed. It was hard at times, almost like a grieving process. So, the emotions have bounced back and forth between true joy and a deep seated sadness that the sounds are gone. Does that make sense?

Take a few moments and listen to the storm that is coming tomorrow. Listen to the thunder, listen to the first moments when the rain starts to patter on the roof. Close your eyes and listen to all of it and I guarantee, you will remember those moments long after they have passed.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

For many years now, I have been the cook at the girl scout camp. My daughter is now one of the "aides" and helps with the younger girls. What is so fantastic is to see hundreds of children and adults all enjoying the week. No cell phones, no mp3 players, no TV, just the sounds of laughing kids and the natural setting around them.

So, for one week, it is like it was years ago, before all the technical gadgets became such a big part of our waking hours. Are we better off? Email is a lifesaver for me, it allows me to communicate with friends and family. So efficient. Texting, once again, great for me, I can "hear" through the messages that most folks would have in a quick phone conversation. The captions on the TV allow me to enjoy a show and not miss content.

But, the quiet. The listening. I ask you...are we better off? I know that it would be a catastrophe if suddenly facebook ended. If cell phones were taken away and computers just weren't available. If we were transported back to a time when it didn't play such a big role in our day. It really wasn't so long ago, was it?

So, I look at the girls and their smiles. At the end of the camp, they are exhausted from all the physical exercise, the campfires, the crafts. It's one week that takes them back to how it once was for kids and gives them a memory that will far outshine anything that they will see on their computer screen.

By the one week, I cook over 400 hot dogs and 30 pounds of ground beef and I enjoy every minute of it.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

It is the Fourth of July! Here are some sounds of the holiday that I remember:

The crunch of eating corn on the cob.
The unfurling flag in a breeze.
A roar of the Shriners weird little cars.
The ooh, ahh of the crowds at the fireworks.
and most of all....
the sound of when everyone stands up when our flag passes by in the parade.

Happy Birthday America and God Bless us all.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Amazing. I could remember sounds by looking at an image. In this case, a picture of a rowboat, created the sound in my mind and a very vivid memory.

It is well known that the sense of smell can bring back memories, that the mind stores the experience and the smell triggers the memory. I think the same could be said for our other senses.

Read on...

It was a very important day at summer camp. All of us were lined up, waiting for our chance to jump in the water and swim around the pier to qualify for the “deep end”. I was ten years old and I wanted so badly to be one of those deep enders. Unfortunately, I was a very poor swimmer, mastering a good dog paddle at best. One by one, the swimmers jumped in and my place in line moved closer to the top.

How my heart pounded and my skinny knees wobbled. On the other side of the pier was a rowboat, slowly rocking against the pillars. This simple, rhythmic sound comforted me, slowed down my heart and quieted my fears.

When my turn came, I jumped in and made the length doing a ridiculous, but determined dog paddle, which proved I could hold my own in deeper waters.

That day was so long ago, more or less forgotten, until I saw this picture. The comforting repetitive sound of a boat bumping against the pier…it all came back to me. Now I can remember this sound I can no longer hear.

It is a simple, yet amazing sound of an ordinary day.

And this is how the book began.


Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Let's back up a bit. Seems like this blog is getting a bit heavy. So, this post, is going to explore a bit of humor in the life of being hearing impaired.

I am walking down the sidewalk on the upper west side in Manhattan. I'm with a good friend and we are having a talk. Now, when you lipread, you have to look at the person, or you aren't going to have much of a conversation. Wendy is talking to me and as I walk down the busy sidewalk, I am looking at her face. "click, click, click". All the sudden, Wendy grabs me and saves me from having my legs entangled in the white cane of the blind person heading straight into my path.

People look at us in disgust as we are leaning against the wall of Zabars, we are laughing so hard. They think we are laughing at the blind lady, trying to navigate her way through the crowds. Little do they know.

Gut busting laughs will save us from taking ourselves too seriously.

I'll write more tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

So, what was the lesson going to be? I got a bit fired up. I noticed that no one was listening to anything but their cellphones and their mp3 players. It made me mad and I was going to let everyone know. So, I was on my soapbox a bit. Listen to me! You don't know what you are missing. Why do the mothers in the pick up line stay on their phones when their children get in the car? Those mp3 players, they can hurt your hearing! Ya,ya,ya,ya.

I should know better. No one likes to be lectured. All my rants, falling on deaf ears. I have a teenager, so I should know better. So, I retreated from trying to tell folks what to do.

Yet, I knew that there had to be some good in this "stuff" that had happened to me.

I just had to be patient and keep praying. Little did I know that a picture of a rowboat knocking against a dock would help me to remember and realize, that I could still hear through sight.

more tomorrow,

Monday, June 28, 2010

A deaf woman creates a book of photographs of sounds -

A deaf woman creates a book of photographs of sounds -
Well, this is my first post! To be honest, I have no idea what I am doing here in this whole blog world. What I do know is that I have a message that I need to share. When I was 27 years old, I was told that I would be deaf by the time I was 40. I pretty much ignored these words. The years that followed were busy. Big career, moved to Manhattan, traveled, married and had my one and only child, Gracie. What a blessed life. But, it was happening...and I knew it. Slowly, my world was quieting, growing softer.

Those first days when I knew that everything was changing, they were dark days. I can tell you that I watched many re-runs of Law and Order. I could no longer hold down the career, the phone was virtually impossible. I was sad and the isolation was terrible.

Sitting out on my back porch one day, I looked around at all the beautiful sounds. It was raining that day, a soft slow sprinkle of rain. A few birds were making a nest in the eaves and my dog was panting at my feet. And I couldn't hear any of it. My world was very silent.

I believe that life brings "stuff" and we are supposed to learn something. Well, at that moment I prayed. I asked God to help me find the lesson and bring something good out of all of it.

That is what this blog will be about. I won't change the world, but perhaps, someone will listen. I'll write more tomorrow...