So today I was helping mum out with our jewellery stall at a manic carnival, and it was that busy that we didn’t have time to eat, drink or put suncream on- my arms are burning!
We make handmade jewellery and sell gifts too, so if you fellow deafies can imagine how can I keep up lipreading our customers when they’re asking how much something is, or if they’re just muttering something?! Sometimes I just wish I could say “move your lips please, it ain’t that hard, can’t even understand a word you’re saying!” Normally I just nod and smile, until I realise they’re asking a question, then I flutter with embarrassment!
But then again, do they know I’m deaf? I often wear my hair down so they won’t be able to see my hearing aids anyway…
There was this lady and man who wanted to buy something but mum was too busy so I offered to take over. I took the product gently from the man to put in a bag for them, but the next minute, the lady was almost being aggressive towards me saying “why are you taking my stuff”, probably thought I was stealing it?! I felt really upset, and gently said “I’m only putting it in a bag for you”… Thankfully my mum came back and explained to the lady that I “couldn’t hear very well” and told me that she only meant it in a humorous way, I felt offended!? I can never understand that type of humour … (Sad face) what would you have done?
I get frustrated when people just walk away if they give up on trying to ask me a question, when I just didn’t hear them in the first place! … So that’s why I thought about wearing a badge that says “I’m deaf” or “Please can I lipread you”, but then again doesn’t that turn some people away? It’s happened to me before, because they feel anxious about not knowing how to communicate with me if they see that I’m deaf, and find someone else to serve them, but on the other hand it would make them more deaf aware if they saw my badge?
What do you think, should I wear the badge or not?
Would love to hear your thoughts, drop a comment or a tweet!
Must dash, Love E x