Wednesday, 26 October 2011


For how long would I have to enlighten people that although deaf people look like everyone else, they are different? Let me explain. Earlier on in the day, I went to see a friend who works in a government parastatal.
At the main gate, security guards were somewhat spread out around the periphery of the compound. I greeted vaguely while walking through the main gates. As I was doing so, I saw a particular security guard focusing his eyes on me. I turned back and said hello and thought nothing more about it. Until. I was leaving. My friend escorted me and we encountered that same security guard who was now visibly angry. He said something to the effect that he called me and I refused to walk back to him. I was befuddled because he was not even sitting at the gate entrance. And I had actually looked at him and for all I know, he had made no gesture whatsoever to beckon me to come or get my attention. Most likely, I didn't hear him. FULL STOP. My friend was embarrassed for me but I urged her not to feel that way. I was rather very bothered by the heat so I did not feel embarrassed about it at all. I could have given the security guard a ten second awareness lesson but I was not in the least bit feeling charitable. Just in case you ask, I wore my hearing aids on my left AND right ears!!
Since I have been back here, I have lost count of the number of people who ask me what is on my ears. Arggggh! Twenty years ago, I have had to contend with a trillion and one enquiries about my hearing-aids. I am quite vexed that I would be again facing questions to the nth degree about my hearing-aid that I am seriously contemplating on wearing a t-shirt worded 'Deaf. What I am wearing in my ear helps me to hear; just like eye-glasses help people to see'. And also maybe on my forehead "Deaf but smart"(more suggestions are highly welcome!)
So you see, how very unenlightened, misinformed (and stupid) some people can be. It is highly frustrating to look normal like everyone else and you know, some people just aren't observant or still hold onto outdated notions or rubbish misconceptions on how someone who is deaf should look like.
And I say 'Duh! Duh!!". And public awareness still continues **sigh**

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