What is it like to be deaf?
People have asked me.
Deaf? How do I explain that?
Simply, I can’t hear.
Noooo, it is much more than that.
It is similar to a goldfish in a bowl.
Always observing things going on.
People talking all the time.
It is like being a man on his own, on an island among foreigners.
Isolation is not a stranger to me.
Relatives say “hi” and “bye”.
But I sit for five hours among them.
Taking great pleasure at amusing babies, reading books, resting, helping out with food.
Natural curiosity perks up upon seeing great laughter, crying, people upset.
Inquire only to meet with “never mind”.
“Oh, it is not important”.
Getting such a summarised statement of a whole story.
Supposed to smile to show the happiness.
Little do they know how truly miserable I am.
People are in control of language usage.
I am at a loss and real uncomfortable.
Always feeling like an outsider among the hearing people, even if it was not their intention.
Always assume that I am part of them.
But it's only my physical presence, not understanding.
The importance of communication.