Weathering Storms.

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We have and we are all weathering storms of our own, throughout our lives, and there will always be more to come. Regardless of its causes.

One may feel more weathered than another.
They may allow themselves to be more stressed by their memories, thoughts and feelings, than by the “stresses” around them. Internalising the storm from within.
Whilst another appears, able to shrug it all off. Things are not always what they seem.

One may choose to be an open book, whilst another, may choose to remain closed.
It does not mean, another suffered, will suffer or is suffering, less.
Yet, one sometimes chooses to borrow tomorrow’s troubles, potentially reliving the stress – two-fold. Each to their own.

Beings will cope differently to one another, whilst one will cope as best as they can, some, the only way they may know how. Some, needing guidance.

One person may retreat whilst another will be in awe of all those around them, for managing to shine on having been and being, in storms of their own.

One may experience a storm in a teacup whilst another may experience it as an overbearing storm on their horizon. 

Every being and situation is different, naturally, coping mechanisms will differ.

What with face masks and face coverings being made mandatory, the isolation, the anxieties and the barriers we as a deaf community are feeling, will face daily. we are ALL in this, dealing with this, as one. The best we can. We will all be able to relate and empathise with one another.

Be proactive, not reactive. It is down to education – there will be situations due to ignorance, arrogance, lack of deaf awareness and presumptions as to why someone is not wearing a mask. Remain kind, remain patient and educate.

I’ve had an elderly guy who was wearing a face mask, laugh at me when I explained I couldn’t understand him since I couldn’t lip read him. I chose to let his immaturity pass, and not react at all. Sure, it bothered me a little at the time but I refuse to let it, or anything trivial, consume and/or dictate me and relatively, imprison me. We cannot stop the waves but we can learn to surf. 

If anyone feels alone, be it as a result of the sea of emotionless, faceless masks or otherwise, please DO REACH OUT, for those who are able to, will be there.

💖

~ SJ (Sara Jae)

Free Of Hatred.

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I am inclined to do a cull shortly, for I do not wish to see posts on any of my social media feeds which are extremely racially divisive and breeds further hatred, nor do I enjoy seeing and knowing that some of these people are blindly supporting and sharing posts of that nature, JUST because they are “friend(s)” with the original poster – without thinking or questioning first, themselves or the poster’s true intentions.

I enjoy respectful healthy debates but when you see a post that tries to suggest white people are uneducated, for whatever they may choose to think ie “All lives matter” etc or for choosing to be silent… To be against ALL racism… That’s each and every one’s right, to think for themselves but to see someone turn and abuse that right by trying to make us all out as “uneducated whites”. is RACIST in itself.

It is rather hypocritical for someone to expect those who are trying to be more conscious of other unlawful killings (regardless of race, colour or creed) since no or not enough noise is being made on their behalf, who’s trying to be more mindful, inclusive and fair, only to be faced with a condition, to conform under pressure to a particular stance, one that might feel and appear divisive… When that someone or group doing the pressuring, could introspect. reflect and compromise also?

“Together we stand, divided we fall”

Unity against ALL racism is the way forwards. Not one way, or the high way.

So to read “uneducated whites” (by Ashton Jean Pierre) was the last straw, especially by a member (same person!) of the deaf community and worse still, seeing other, potentially influential, members of the same community, supporting. accepting and even sharing that notion. Most people I know have chosen to let it go.

Seeing a degree of manipulation being applied to suit – in all senses, is saddening. Whether they realise it, or not. For potentially. not conforming to them or their way of thinking, behaving.

It’s totally fine for those who wish to remain silent, it’s totally fine for those who wish not to explain themselves… it’s totally fine whatever one chooses to do, or say, or not say. It’s totally fine, not to conform under pressure, it’s totally fine, to stand firm in what you believe in, regardless of the belief(s). It is totally fine, for you to stay true to yourself.

No one has the right to dictate, you, your way of thinking, beliefs, your conscience, your life.

Those who know me well, will know that I am not afraid to use my voice, or to use my right to keep my space neutral, peaceful and free of hatred. As one possibly can.

Politics vs Morals
Seconded.

Quality rather than quantity.

~ SJ (Sara Jae)

Mask Warriors.

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Photos by SJ

I had to go into the local pharmacy this morning to pick up a prescription for my daughter, the staff were all wearing face masks.

Talking at me….

I’m patiently letting them know I’m not able to understand them as I am profoundly deaf and I cannot lip read them with their masks on.

They started pointing away here and there, still talking at me, I’m close to walking out but my daughter needs this prescription.

Someone gave me a pen and paper, I write down what I’m there for and who it’s for. Hand the pen and paper back… Prescription is found and she returns, trying to talk at me again.
I’m close to feeling emotional, anxious and once again I patiently remind her that I can’t hear her or lip read her because of her mask, or any of the mask wearing staff within that shop.

She realised and finally empathised, lowered her mask and spoke to me with a smile in her eyes.

What a world of difference that made. 😏

I had to go to the bank last week to sort an issue out, the staff in there were wearing those transparent facial shields – it may have been surreal still but it was certainly a lot more “friendly” and we could still easily communicate. I’d pick that over a face mask, any day.

~ SJ (Sara Jae)

Deaf Mental Health On Social Media.

If you want to learn sign language or needed an interpreter for an appointment, would you settle for someone who knows only the basics and perhaps a little more? You would not because you would want a qualified sign language tutor or a registered interpreter – right? So that you could be fully confident of what you were being taught / told.

Then why are people (especially the deaf) sharing very personal videos about their mental health issues and sharing them to a secret group, run by an admin team and members that are NOT qualified to relatively advise?

I from personal experience appreciate that friendly support can be therapeutic and is better than nothing but it’s potentially dangerous in such a social media group. Thank you, but no thank you. I’ll stick to sites provided by qualified counsellors.

Please view a previous post of mine which also relates to mental health therapy, the deaf way. 

Vent given. ☺️

~ SJ (Sara Jae)

An (Un)fortunate Reminder.

I have been (un?)fortunately reminded why I did not want to be a part of any social media groups, relating to or based on deafness / sign language. For I am now much happier, without, having since left quite a few.

Why?

Having this extraordinary second chance at life has meant I have very little tolerance for such toxic “deaf world” attitudes. For me to get extremely angry nowadays is very rare but as always, is justified.

My personal experience (here in the UK) is that because deaf people do not support each other, that often makes matters worse. Sadly, causing mental health issues from within.

What is deaf culture? And an important message for the deaf community.

The deaf community has however, come a long way and that should not be forgotten. From being hidden away, or being forbidden to sign, to what it is today for we now, are able to be an equal. There is still a lot to do to improve the mental health state within the deaf community and it is down to the deaf community to work harder through legal means to improve situations.

Each and every being, deserves to be respected – regardless.
Each one of us, deserves better.

I would like to publicly thank my friends, for your continued support. For one another especially. For your courage and conviction.

Much love and admiration to you all. 💖💖💖

Bless your cottons! 😜

May positivity and peace reign over us all, once more.

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~ SJ (Sara Jae)

British Sign Language.

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Deaf & deaf

The one thing I have noticed about (British) sign language is how it is always evolving. How they signed in the 1930’s is different yet similar to today’s. Back then it was mainly fingerspelling at a very fast speed!

https://www.bslzone.co.uk/watch/deaf-world-archive-films-deaf-people-1930s/

I also observe that there is no right or wrong way to sign a word, due to regional “accents”. Much like how spoken languages is always evolving, has accents and have adopted foreign words too.

I bring this up solely because I’ve noticed people continuously trying to correct a person’s signing “No, wrong!”, I have even ‘heard’ (pardon the pun!) that someone was trying to suggest to the signing community, not to adopt any foreign signs.

There are different signs to words like “Deaf” and “Thank you” today, to what I learnt as a child.

~ SJ (Sara Jae)

Freedom From Frustration.

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Keeping the Tree House fb group going as a wise friend put it “was a form of self defeatist self abuse.”

I have long since been locked “in an intimidated interaction.”

The damage has been done, by all those who consciously chose to target, to spread slander & manipulative lies, acted on their disdain simply because they could not succeed in playing games with me. They could not get what they wanted which was their own way and my Tree House.

The Tree House fb group is now, closed.

The website however, will remain open to view as a lot of hard work has been put into it. I thank once again, all those who willingly contributed and kindly supported.

By removing myself from the equation, mainly the negativity generated by the offenders of the deaf world, I am now free.

To be me. ☺️

~ SJ (Sara Jae)

SELFLESS.

I shared this post regarding a deaf blind man the other day, highlighting how *SELFLESS* this young lady was. I was then made aware of a twitter thread posted by Rebecca Cokely, who is apparently an US disability activist.

And so on…. (do read the full twitter thread)

It is somehow expected that airlines (and hospitals) employ appropriately trained staff to assist, especially, those who happen to have communication issues. Otherwise, they, the customers, should not be travelling.

Errrrrmm….

My sister, who has worked for an airline and is highly experienced in customer services, has this to say, in response.

Valid points but if he was happy / confident to travel alone that’s his choice? In an ideal world every flight would have flightcrew representing every spoken language and all means of communication; plus a doctor for any medical emergencies. That’s not going to happen (but technology is becoming advanced enough to help), so second to this ideal it would be nice to think that an airline would be able to include a deafblind communicator crew member on his booked flight, but this would presumably restrict his choice of when he travels (much like only being able to see captioned performances at a particular show twice a year). If this isn’t a reality, it leaves us with the situation we have today, employees and fellow travellers who do the best that they can.

If the concern is primarily consent – there is a lovely video of an interview he (Tim Cook, the man in the viral video) has done –

I also came across this which is the other extreme. Sad to see this had happened –

https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/deaf-blind-man-is-hauled-off-easyjet-flight-over-safety-fears-1-4413794/amp

Why is it so hard for people to just let it be? It is, to quote my friend, “miserable shits” in society who make it so difficult, for certain people to get by these days.

A drop of kindness goes a very long way… There is no harm at all, in going above and beyond.

~ SJ (Sara Jae)

 

The BBC License Fee.

That same old drum is being banged upon once more.

Deaf people always seem to resent having to pay the full license fee to the BBC, just because the blind get a concession and they do not. In the old days, I might have agreed as there was evidently a real lack of captions and hardly any in-vision signers. Nowadays, the accessibility is there. And then some.

My father went through the very same motions a few years back, which my experience with, has prompted this post.

Petition

Any petition, past, present or to come, to reduce the BBC licensing fee on grounds of being deaf (regardless of how severe it is) and that programmes are inaccessible will fail. Without a doubt.

It does not matter if you do not watch the BBC even if it’s out of protest. If you watch or listen to any of the other channels or even access them online over devices, this is prescisley what the fee covers. That space. The fee is basically a tax, so you can watch or access any channels over the air space that is owned by the British Broadcasting Corporation. Better known as, the BBC.

It is extremely hard, to keep deaf people happy, especially if they love anything that’s free.

~ SJ (Sara Jae)