Learning Something Useful with My Hands

My hands have done a lot in my lifetime to help others.  I’ve worked with people’s food, money, health, well-being and public safety for over twenty years collectively.  Lately, I’d been feeling trapped and idle having to remain at home, caring for my disabled son  until an opportunity arose that I simply could not refuse.  A lady in my church knows sign language and I’ve begun taking lessons.  I’m like a kid on the first day of school all over again.  However, I’m not that kid that’s nervous or withdrawn.  I am the excited one, eager to ask questions and more importantly, impress the teacher.  I knew the alphabet, count up to ten, and some simple words.  I accomplished what I set out to do: impress the teacher.  She was happy to see that I had a good sign language base.  I owe that to my childhood friend who is deaf.  He and his sister taught a few of us interested children in daycare how to sign some basic words, and the alphabet.  Learning how to fluently sign had always been something I wanted to do, but I let this simple phrase of five words kill the ambition:  never got around to it.  Well, now I am back at it without anything getting in the way.  Several weeks ago, I thought learning sign language would be the only option for communicating with my son.  He hadn’t passed a hearing test at all, including his infant hearing screening, and had to undergo a hearing test under anesthesia.  The results came back normal.  He’s also had three surgeries on both of his ears.  I am very grateful his hearing is normal, but I am not letting that stop me from learning a skill that had always been a desire of mine.  His speech therapist told me there are people that use sign language to communicate and can hear perfectly well.  Signing is an easier way to communicate for some children who are learning disabled.  So that is very advantageous.  However, I must admit, I am going to be selfish with this one.  I am going to learn to sign fluently because I want to, not because I have to, not to become more lucrative, just simply because I want to.  There is a beholden beauty in sign language, and I’d love to be to speak, not just write, with my hands.

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