When I began this blog in July 2021, my primary goal at that time was to connect with people experiencing deafness in any of its forms. My counselors had suggested I reach out via blogging since my deafness prevents me from communicating in “normal” ways (in person, phone, etc.). I’ve always loved writing and in my younger days had actively submitted short fiction to publishers (and racked up rejection slips along the way). Certainly a blog could combine my love of writing with my need and desire to connect with other deaf people, I thought. So, I made the leap to WordPress.
My blog languished in the shadows for two months, virtually invisible. I plugged away at writing essays about my deaf experiences that no one wanted to read and dutifully checked my stats page every day. (What stats? They’re weren’t any to track.) My initial excitement over beginning my blog project began to wane and I found myself dreading to check my blog each day, knowing nothing had changed and not knowing what to do about it.
Finally, in late September, I came to the proverbial crossroads: my blog was going nowhere, so I could either abandon it, or try posting some of my poetry I’d had sitting around for years. What did I have to lose, I thought. No one would read it anyway.
So I posted some poetry, and views began to trickle in, with an occasional like. It was exciting to see activity after two months of silence. Now and then, a rare comment would appear, and the sensation of making a connection with someone else was both startling and welcome. And the more I posted my poetry, the more things picked up. I found the WordPress community to be the kind of place I’d always wanted to experience: a group of like-minded people sharing their hearts and souls through writing, and supporting and encouraging one another. It struck me how serendipitous this journey had become: I’d started out looking for fellow deaf people, but had found fellow writers instead. My deaf blog had switched gears and become a poetry blog, and I was seeing some progress, albeit in baby steps.
Now, perhaps I’m greedy, but I still want to find other deaf people. I need this to help me in my journey along my road to deaf acceptance. So, I’m sending out an invitation to anyone in the WordPress community who is deaf to any degree and who shares a love of writing to make yourselves known. I’d like to hear from you and have the best of both worlds by getting to know other deaf writers. I want to read about your own journeys with deafness and writing. I want to hear about how you cope with deafness, how it affects or defines your lives, if you consider it a blessing or a curse, if it has changed you as a person, if you struggle with it daily like I do or if you’ve come to accept it as part of who you are. I’m also interested in how deafness has affected your writing in terms of both style and subject matter.
It’s my personal experience that deafness is extremely socially isolating. That’s my reality. I know no other deaf or hard-of-hearing people. I don’t know sign language. My area is too rural to offer much of anything regarding deaf support services. I just want to meet other deaf writers and share our experiences and learn from them.
If you’re interested, leave a comment or use my Contact page to connect. I’d love to hear from you. My deaf essays can be found in the Essays section of my blog in case anyone cares to explore them.
Finally, thank you, WordPress community. Your kindness is appreciated. You’ve all been a bright light in what has been an otherwise dark period for me.