Shake. Buzz. Shake. Rattle. Morning wake up call. It’s early Monday morning, six o’clock. The bus comes at seven, so I have an hour. Eh… I hit my vibrating pillow’s remote’s snooze. I mean, what’s the point of a sounding alarm clock if you’re not going to hear it? So, yes, my alarm clock is a pillow that vibrates beneath my head. Of course, since no noise can disturb me overnight, I’m a deep sleeper. This means that the vibrations need to be at high, despite my advanced touch awareness. I think that’s the ropes. I have a remote that is connected to my 200 dollar pillow, that startles me to wake up.
Just five more minutes, and then I’ll get up. Deaf teens have the same struggle as you ya’ know. Zzzzzzz… Okay, so maybe I didn’t feel my alarm? I slept in. Again. I now have thirty minutes to brush my brown hair, eat stale cereal, and find a decent outfit. Ughhh. I can’t even wake mom up because she almost never gets any sleep with a 8 1/2 month-old baby, so if she’s sleeping, let her sleep. As I’m getting out of bed, I stare at my phone. It was lighting up, probably with some people sending pointless, data-sucking crap over social media. I got social media so I could meet new people and find inspiration in this quiet life.
But people don’t even use it like that. They use it to catch up on drama, or get attention. Every other person you follow is going to post something inappropriate or complain about how they’re single. It rather kills brain cells more than anything else. Everyday society. Treach for the doorknob of my polished wood door. The slightest bit of light was flowing through the small bar of open space between my dark wooden floor and the door. Mom wasn’t awake. I opened the kitchen cupboard to a box of corn cereal. Within ten minutes, that and an additional glass of milk vanished from the island counter.
My dresser consisted of a pair of jeans and a school t-shirt, in which I was wearing two minutes later. I pull my hair into a high ponytail, but take it out because | left out a long strand of hair. It’s, of course, already 6:45. I have time to shove my homework into my bag, and make a sandwich for lunch. Done! The bus is here, and I surprisingly have my phone, decent shoes, a lunch, and my homework. I run outside towards the bus, my mom’s red car in the driveway. There Mrs. Hilv’s sub was. Mrs. Hilv slipped on the ice and broke her hip, which didn’t do her job any justice.
The sub gave me another weird star replied, “Good. She doesn’t know that I’m deaf, so she talks to me when I get on the bus. I can’t even hear what she’s saying, but I try to guess and then give a response with my uncontrolled, never used voice. Apparently “good,” wasn’t good enough for her. I sit down in an empty seat near the front. From past experiences, I have learned to shy away from the back seats. The bus starts to move, and I pull out my phone. I plug in my lime green dollar store headphones, in which I only have to get people to think I’m listening to music. Then, they don’t try to talk to me if they don’t already know I’m deaf.
The people that do know think it’s funny, but if I can’t hear their laughs, it can’t bother me. The headphones land into my ears. I turn on my phone to view that it’s at five percent. Anddddd I forgot to charge it. Even though I didn’t actually have music, I would’ve scrolled through virtual entertainment. Great. Another boring thirty minute bus ride. I lean back into the grey seat, but refuse to close my eyes knowing people will use my peace as a funny caption against me. I go over the homework in my head. Math? Finished. Science? Ugh.. Forget that. Language Arts? Done! History? None. Writing? None.
I had my study hall before science if I was seriously worried about finishing. But, I wasn’t. I just wanted to talk to Derek. Our bus is late, as always. The teachers dismiss us because it’s the sub’s fault. Mrs. Hilv wouldn’t be back for at least another month. Hip surgery must be intense. The bell is supposedly ringing, and I know soon enough when my friendly classmate taps my shoulder like she always does with a perfect smile. I smile and mouth thanks. Here we go. Start of my day in science with Derek! He’s already in class as I’m walking in.
A note is ready for me on my side of the table as I sit down, “Hey Cat! Your weekend? ” I write back, “Interesting. I’ll elaborate later. Yours? ” Derek is taking forever because he gets worried that the teacher will notice the note. Looking up, he writes in sloppy letters, “Good. I’ll elaborate later,” I glance up to him, and he smirks, knowing that I received his most mocking comment. “At least I have something to elaborate on. ” For “normal” people, you can whisper to someone in class without making a grand motion. For me, I’d have to sign, and that movement can easily be spotted. I mean, I’ve done it before no doubt. Teachers are overly sympathetic and let it pass.
They treat me like I’m different. I am, but only in one way. That way is major, but it doesn’t make me act unusual. I can write better essay papers than the normal teenager in front of me. Dear teachers, the fact that I’m deaf creates a deceiving borderline. Just because I can’t hear, doesn’t mean that I can’t speak. I’m not always innocent. Quit treating me like I’m two grades younger than I actually am. Thanks. I hate that teachers and just people in general, sometimes my dad, treat me like a special case. I can talk. My vocabulary is just as experienced as the next. Even though I can’t actually hear, I still can.
I can read stares and doubtful faces. I can read a disgusted face from an elated face. It’s not hard, so maybe read mine. The thing about sign language is that you always have think before signing. Some people are learning, so you have to go slowly. You really have time to think. It takes double the effort to actually get words out of your mouth. If you want words, I’ll give you words. I’m not stupid. That’s not the issue. You have ears, so learn to listen with them. Learn to understand. You have ears, so take in the emotion. If I had one day that I could hear, I would listen to peoples voices, moods, feelings.
I would listen to an important opinion. Your opinion is only half of the story. That’s what our world needs. My parents, my mother on the most part, decided to put me in a normal school for that reason. If I would’ve been enrolled in a deaf pupil school, which I was almost forced in by doctors, I wouldn’t of been treated differently. Of course, everybody there could relate, but people keep you restrained in a cage. I wouldn’t meet the outside world. At least here I can talk to different people and inspire others. Sometimes I wish could’ve been enrolled there. Sometimes I am very grateful.
It depends on opinion and both point of views. Math 180, the great and wonderful math class. Nope. Actually! take that back. Let’s start over~~~ Math 180, the dreaded class full of people that like to complain, and a teacher that treats me like every other. Anyways, I’m landed here. Mrs. Pretons is babbling on about something. Probably about how we would begin our unit after spring break. She continuously did that when the interpreter was still here. Yeah, yeah lady. We actually get it, you’ve said it… What? One thousand times? I doesn’t matter. Nobody is listening.
I’m not either, but I’m not expected to. As of school this week, the teachers were informed ahead of time that it would be difficult for me to participate in class for a while. I figure it’ll actually be an okay week, for once it’s accepted to slack. I’ve been pretty good about trying to strengthen my self-worth. I’m available this week, so I’ve been thinking about stopping in at the guidance counselor’s. I’ve always found it stupid, but Derek’s even brought it up. I’ve considered it, and the people that go there never complain. Would I get bullied for trying to feel better? Bullying. Another topic…
Bullying is unfortunately common in most of all schools: noticed or not. Every school tries their best to decrease it, but it sometimes it goes unnoticed. It’s hard to get rid of bullies. They aren’t going to want to admit that they’re causing insecurity in another person. The bully itself might’ve been bullied, or has some other story behind the issue. Everybody has weaknesses. Some people hide them by criticizing others. Being deaf, people think it’s acceptable to call me names or talk behind my back. I have more than one person to support me. They defend me and tell me of the criticizers.
It’s definitely an obstacle. I get so insecure and unconfident. I don’t need people to tell me of my flaws that I already know of. I don’t need a reminder like how my phone reminds me to charge it. I’m like you. I have words to say. I have talents. I have something that you don’t have, and thats gratitude and respect. “Your weekend? ” Derek signs with a smile when we sit down at lunch. “OK. My mother actually brought my to a support group,”|| gesture. “Support group? ” Derek signs back. “Yes. ” “No,” he questions, “what’s that sign? ” He’s not too familiar with sign language. He doesn’t have to be.
He only needs enough to have a decent conversation with me. Thats where notes come in handy. “OK. S-U-P… P-O-R-T… G-R-O-U-P,” I finger spell slowly, emphasizing pauses to show double letters and new words. “OH,” he finger spells in response, “How did that go? ” “I actually liked it. There is thirteen of us, and we all have at least one missing sense. The support is amazing. It’s like they actually understand. They’ve all been there, done that. ” “That’s awesome, Cat. ” Derek signs, but it’s almost fake. He seemed kind of glum, and I get it because he’s tried to make me feel better.
It just didn’t do the same for me. He can’t relate. There is only so much he can feel and understand. He probably feels like all of his support went to waste, but it didn’t. It’s what made me stronger. For being lazy during school, it still seemed like a long day. Derek still talked to me. He wasn’t that upset. He was, but he kept it inside. He’s brave. He’s tough, and that’s all he wants to act like. Men are always supposed to be strong and fearless, right? He doesn’t want to hurt my feelings, but it’s okay if he did. I kind of deserve it, and I don’t want to be treated specially. He shouldn’t have to hold ev