Beach Waves

There is nothing more healing and calming to the soul than the sound of the waves hitting the sand.  Nature’s melody.


I listened to the waves and felt myself enter a meditative state of mind and soul as I watched the seagulls circling above, their beaks opening in silent cries.

Vicious birds.  If I didn’t know better, I would think that they were vultures by the way that they act sometimes. A few of them had converged on a just-vacated spot in search of food left behind by humans, and I had watched one snap at another, which moved away, cowering in fear. Bully.

These birds have either gotten lazy, gotten used to people leaving things behind, or there really is no food in these oceans.  And all of these are a problem. I’m not quite fond of the birds attempting to swoop down on me while I stood eating a sandwich earlier in the day. I only managed to avoid having them collide with my head, not because I heard them coming, but because I saw their shadows on the sand.

The seagulls kept on crying, and I turned to the only thing that I can hear at the beach, beyond the human voices surrounding me in some unclear cacophony of words, and languages. I never bring my hearing aids to the beach, as the sand, the water, the sun, the sun lotion, and the humid air won’t do wonders for these pieces of plastic. So the only thing I can hear with any real clarity is the waves hitting the sand.

KAATCHSHSH. The wave hits the shore and recedes for yet another attempt.  KAATCHSHSH.

For a moment, I felt the ocean calling to me, and wished that I could be a mermaid. I never understood why Ariel left the ocean for land; it’s so beautiful down there. I know because I’ve seen it–the way that the fish hide in the seaweeds, the way that the starfish float in the water, the green, growing seaweeds looking like tall grass. What I would do to be part of that world.

I entered the water, first cold, but quickly warming up, and let the waves wash over me.  I felt the way the stress just melted out of my cells, while every wave massaged my back.  I entered in deeper, going under and over the waves–some were big and powerful, pulling me back towards the shore.  I let them. And then I went back out into the deeper water anyways.  I felt calm and relaxation seep in.  The water does that to me.

I lay out on my back, and the world goes completely quiet. Sound supposedly travels faster in water, but I hear absolutely nothing. I let the waves bounce me around, splashing on my face, pulling me under before pushing me back out to the surface.

People say that the ocean is dangerous; that tides can suck you up and pull you out to sea, and that sharks can eat you up. It can destroy homes and livelihoods. It’s true. But I’ve never felt that way about the water. I don’t understand the logic of being afraid of one of nature’s majestic and powerful creations–one that we need to survive. I respect the water for its power to do many things, but I also trust it to take care of me.

And while I may not have the pleasure of hearing many things in my life, I am glad that I can still hear “the way the ocean refuses to kiss the shoreline, no matter how many times it is sent away,” as Sarah Kay (an author) had so very nicely said.

I see a big wave coming, so I begin to swim, and then feel the wave take me and propel me forward to the shore.

KAAATCHSHSH. The wave hits the shore.

Until next time.



The Awkward Silences in Conversations


My phone rang on vibrate, which was weird, considering it was 11:30 am.  My parents know not to call me on my cell phone at work.


The phone kept buzzing in my drawer.  So I opened the drawer, and took a glance at the number.


Who the heck do I know in Nevada?!

It stopped ringing, and I took a quick look at the number on 411.

Santa Fe Workshops? EH?

I did sign up for some workshops the night before…but not in Santa Fe.

Two hours later, at lunch I called them back.

“Santa Fe Workshops, Anne speaking.”

“Good Afternoon, I’m Addy, I am calling because someone from Santa Fe Workshops called me earlier.”

I entered the bathroom, trying to avoid all the coworkers talking in the lunchroom.  It wasn’t any quieter thanks to the fan. SWOOSH BRZZ BRZZZZ.

“Addy, right?”, Anne said.


“Ok. Hold on.”

I rolled my eyes at the fan, and I went back out to the lunchroom.

“You know, it ain’t  like that,” said one of my coworkers in the lunchroom, “you gotta-”

“Addy?  You signed up for our affliate’s workshops on October 15-18th, correct?”

“Yes” I responded trying hard to focus on the lady’s voice.

“But chu gotta put it in de fridge, or it ain’t not gonna work like that.” The conversation in the lunchroom continued.

“One person, single room?” said Anne.


“Ok. hmm,” she replied, and I figured she must be looking at the screen.

Two people started to talk at the same time in the lunchroom. I got up and went back into the restroom.

“What kind of *SWOOOSH BRZZ BRZZ* do you have?”

“I’m sorry, what did you say?”

She repeated the question, and asked a few more.

“Do you have any food allergies or *mumble mumble*?” asked Anne. SWOOSH BRZZ BRZZ. The conversation on the other side of the door intensified.

Holy crap, is there no place where a girl can go and make a damn call? Is it so dang hard to ask for quiet????

“Uhmm. No,” I replied.


“But I am hard of hearing,” I blurted out.


Did I REALLY just say that?! What the heck??  Oh s***.

“It’s not like I really need anything or anything, you know. Uhm,” I started rambling, ” I can do function just fine.  But I just thought you should know, in case of anything, or something.”  AWKWARD SILENCE.

“No, yeah. I’m still gonna put it down, ok?” said Anne.


The wonderful, friendly chit-chat that I had going on with Anne seemed to have disappeared. SWOOSH. BRZZ. BRZZ.

Stupid fan.

We finished up the conversation, and I re-entered the lunchroom, and sat down at my table.

Did I just ruin my chances for a normal workshop?  Or will the instructors start to feel sorry for me? How will they treat me? Oh hell…why couldn’t I just keep my mouth shut?

Tatto-ify, me?

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Tattoo….You?.”

I do not have any tattoos, and I am not a huge fan of ‘arm sleeves,’ and many tattoos in one spot. Perhaps it is because the tattoos that I have seen, they were numerous and so close together, their colors mixing together, that it was confusing and distracting.   I wasn’t sure what to focus on when I saw the tattoos.  But I do have to agree that some tattoos may look nice.

If I were to put something on my body, it would be something meaningful or that I really liked, because I will be looking at it for the majority of my life, and something simple and in one color.

Over the past couple of years, I’ve seen a few pictures of tattoos that I have liked, and would find significant. If I got a tattoo, I would choose one of the following:

Dates:  I saw a picture of a girl who had the dates she beat cancer tattooed onto her back.  That is something that would be significant to me–tattooing the date that I went into remission from cancer as a reminder that I’ve overcome some of the tougher things in life.

Mermaid:  This one I saw one of my acquaintances get.  It was a gorgeous, colorful mermaid on her side.  This mermaid is probably the only one that I would consider getting in color. I would choose the mermaid because I have loved The Little Mermaid since I was in the cancer center, and I feel like I have a connection with the water, the ocean.  I can get into the water and never get bored of swimming around in it.

Phoenix: My best friend has a phoenix with music tattoo on her shoulder.  It is simple, elegant and beautiful.  Not sure if I would get it on my shoulder, but I would choose the phoenix because it is a mythical creature that rises from the ashes and keeps rising from the ashes.  It symbolizes reincarnation, and to me, it also is a symbol of being knocked down but coming back up, stronger than ever.  I’d like to have a phoenix to remind me of all the issues I’ve been through, and that it has made me the stronger person that I am today.

This last one may be a bit “WTF?” and I would only do it if I had someone in my family who had this tattoo.

Auschwitz numbers:  I’ve read about this tattoo in an article; some younger generations were tattooing their grandparents’ numbers from the concentration camps in order to keep the memory of the camp alive.  I think it’s a tattoo that would lead to some history lessons for those who asked about it.  I have a fascination with World War II, and this would have been my nod to history.

Unknown Reason for Awakening Leads to Near-Panic


I jerk awake, sweaty and hot.  My heart is beating 100 km per hour, and the disorienting panic begins to set in.

What the hell?!


What idiot got into a car accident yet again?

I live on a county road with a dangerous blind spot–a curve on a hill–and accidents happen all the time because people drive too fast and don’t pay attention.

I stumble to my feet and even though I see the curve from my bedroom window, I pad my way to the bathroom window to see what was going on. I simply do not want to open up my curtains for no reason and let the light in.

There are no cars backed up on the road, actually, there is not one single car on the road.

What is going on?

I groan.  Somewhere in my sleepy-to-panic mode, I’d failed to notice that it was pouring outside.  I can barely make out my neighbor’s house, much less the white Toyota heading down the street towards us.  I calm down; finally, the sound and the empty roads make sense.


The thunder shakes the house, its vibrations registering in my brain through my feet touching the bare ceramic floor, and lightening flashes the already bright sky.

What time is it? I wonder.  I want to go back to sleep but not to work so soon.

On my way to my room, I peek through the door to my parent’s bedroom. Dad, as usual, is sleeping on the floor, but I wonder why he is still home when it’s so bright out.  He usually leaves for work at 5 am.


This time, as I walk to the door way of my room, I hear the rain splashing against the roof, the sweet lullaby that I hardly can hear anymore. I wish in that moment that I could hear it better, so that its calming sound would put me back to sleep. Alas, that is not meant to be.

I check the time on my phone. 3:48 am.  That’s not possible–it’s too early for it to be this bright–so I rub my eyes, and check again. 3:49 am.

Aw shucks. I just went to bed at 1 am, and I need my sleep or else I am going to be exhausted at work. Stupid thunderstorm and stupid hearing.  A thunderstorm wakes me up, but I sleep through fire bells, alarm clocks, pots and pans clanging, and roosters.  My hearing baffles me–I’m almost deaf, but yet I hear better than I should. How the hell does this work?

3:50 am. Well, if this is the hour…it means that dad and mom will soon be waking up to get dad off to work. It would be for the best if I wasn’t awake or around, lest I got dragged into yet another one of my parent’s numerous arguments.


The thunderstorm is quieter and further away. I lay my head down on the pillow–right ear to the pillow–and for a moment I hear the rain.

Then, I’m asleep.

If I had three wishes…

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Lucky Star.”

I don’t really care about the things that I can go out and buy in some store around where I live.  I’d rather have experiences over things.

There’s also one thing that I wouldn’t  wish for: to make me a “normal”, “hearing”  person. That may have been my wish in third or fourth grade, but now, I see my hearing impairment as a quality of life and as something that is part of me.  Without it, I would not have worked as hard as I did to get to where I am today.  I probably wouldn’t have the experiences and the memories that I now do. So I am grateful for it all.

I would, however, wish for the following:

-To spend some more time with my grandmother.  I loved my grandmother.  She had been the one that was there most of my childhood, walking me to and from school, taking me to visit her family, cooking, laughing and protecting. She made some of my outfits, and mended a lot of my torn clothes. And everyone says that she was there for me the most, not my cousins or anyone else. I would wish to spend more time with her, especially if she had been in her better days, before she lost her mind to dementia or Alzheimer’s (we never found out if that is the case), and she could take long walks. I would like to ask her so many questions, so many things about her stories of the war and communism, to clarify some things.

-To be a writer and photographer.  I love those two things, and I’d like to write more about topics that matter, and topics that interest me, but that could also be of use to others. Besides, I like to work alone, and have the flexibility of working during times that work best for me.  While I do have the first at my current job, I don’t have the second one.  And in some cases, it would be useful, especially when my parents get sick or to take care of kids (if I ever have any).

-To live in another country. I cannot stand my suburban town, and sometimes I wonder why the heck I even bothered coming back. At times, I believe that it was a mistake to do so.  But I did, and there’s nothing I can change about it, nor do I regret it. If I did have a choice to live anywhere else, I’d choose Europe. Pick a city to be my base, explore that city and then travel all around the continent when time allows.


It’s past one am in the morning, and I feel kind of defeated.

I spent the last hour or so debating with someone on Facebook about the word “American.”  They posted some article about University guide to political correctness. The comments below the post latched onto the word “American.”

Quite frankly, I don’t really care much for political correctness. I feel like a lot of people hide their true feelings and the truth behind being politically correct. I am all for being kind and polite, but being honest.

What really bugs me is that “American” is used to talk about people from the “United States of America.” Granted, United States of America is the only one that has “America” in its name, but there are two American continents. And all of these people living on these continents are American.

I sometimes wonder if the founders meant “United States of American continent,” when they chose the name. At that time, the rest of the Americas was either under the control of the French, the British, the Spanish, the Portuguese,  the Russians (Alaska), or it wasn’t colonized. So when the colonies gained their freedom and later made the Constitution in 1787, the US would have truly been the only United States in America (as in BOTH continents).  That’s just from a historic standpoint. Linguistically, it also makes sense.

But I digress. Going over the debate right now, I noticed all these stupid mistakes that I’ve made. Mistakes that made it easier for my opponent (a good acquaintance) to make her points, which she also managed to make stronger. Her arguments were pretty good, and I soon found myself scrambling for answers, and for arguments against her.

Neither of us truly changed our opinions. She is a true US patriot, and will defend all things American.  I, on the other hand, am more about the global aspect of things–roles of countries in the global arena.  And I think that this kind of stuff has no place in that arena. There are more important things to sort out.

Either way, the whole debate about this thing has brought up my self-doubts. Of not being good enough, or not being liked. Years of being one of two HOH kids at my public schools has done that to me through all the bullying.

Today’s Challenges

Today, I had one of those days that began with some difficulty.  While I had no problems getting up and getting to work, at work I could not keep my eyes open for the world.  I literally think I dozed off about five times for five minutes while struggling to clear some alerts at the bank. You know, it’s not like what I do at the bank is particularly challenging.

I basically look at the same reports, similar alerts, and similar customers every day at the back office.  And it goes on, week after week, month after month, and quarter after quarter.  It’s boring, really, and since I get bored easily, I  muddle through the work.  Cause there’s no other way, and I absolutely have to meet deadlines. Or else the bank can get into some serious trouble for non-compliance of these things.

The only thing that made my day was lunch with Maksim, who is an older gentleman at my work.  He is quite a character. I live for his stories about his childhood, about scuba diving, about his little home up in the hills that he drives to and from every day.  I see him every day, running around, trying to get things done to maintain the old building.  Talking to him always brightens up my day.  Just enough to give me energy to keep on working–like a jolt of Energizer Bunny.

The day did become easier to deal with sometime after 11 am, when suddenly I felt so much more awake. Maybe it’s the two cups of tea that I had drank, or the freezing cold from the air conditioning, but I surely got to work, and got things done.

If only I had that energy every day.

At home, I was hounded today by my parents who wish for me to go get a Master’s degree. I love to go to school, but I am no longer willing to go to school to advance my career.  If I further my education, I want to do it for myself, for my curiosity and to quench my thirst about topics, not to have another piece of paper nailed to the damn wall, of which I could be temporarily proud (until I hate what I do) and my parents proud that I’ve “finally” finished school. I think people are going around the wrong way when it comes to learning, and education.

But hey, what do I know? I guess a twenty-something deaf girl doesn’t really know much.



Weddings. They’re a celebration of life, of two people joining together, and bringing together their families into one orbit. For me, it’s a hopeful thing, even though I don’t really care for the whole religious aspect of it. And I am surrounded by family that matter, whom I love and I know I can spend a good time with. At the same time, navigating the course of a wedding is a delicate matter, especially for someone like me.

I went to my cousin’s wedding today.  The church looked beautiful, with it’s rich altar filled with statues, and it’s ceiling painted in the rich Eastern European tradition. The bride wore a simple dress, with some sparkle, and she definitely looked gorgeous, while the groom wore a simple black suit with a red bow-tie. Simple. Low-key, with some 100 + guests.

I have memorized mass by heart, knowing what words to say, when to sing, and when to kneel, after years of attending a church. To my surprise, I even picked up on the organist singing “Hallelujah” on the second refrain, and I sang along–while not wearing my hearing aids.

But for the life of me, I could not hear the vows. I watched the bride and groom repeat the vows after the priest, and all I could think was that I would never be able to repeat after the priest without looking at him to lip-read. l know that I will mishear the words that the priest would say, and I would say the vows wrong. And I wondered how I would solve that problem should I ever get married.

The party afterwards was filled with loud, blasting music.  I had my hearing aids in at that point because I wanted to be able to have a conversation with people, even though, I have discovered that no one can hear over the music at these parties, ever. My other cousin and I danced, laughed, talked, and ate. I enjoyed feeling the beat from the music pulse from the floor through my body, and I had a good time; however, I left the party with a throbbing headache from all the noise and sore feet.

I may not be getting married tomorrow or in a year, but I am constantly aware of how my hearing loss limits my ability to do certain things like the rest of the people in my circle or be a part of something. This is just one of those situations where I have to figure out a solution on the fly and make decisions based on knowing myself and my thresholds for pain and sensitivity.