Here’s Why I’m the Worst Sister Ever.

Lisa, getting ready for her 8-mile run.

My sister, the:

  • school psychologist
  • runner
  • yogi
  • apple pie-baking
  • rockstar auntie
  • Toastmaster
  • sometimes vegan (until burgers are involved)
  • sisterlock-wearing
  • world-traveler
  • lover of books
  • original blogger of the family
  • coffee-loving
  • Aquarius
  • 80′s baby
is Deaf .
She lost her hearing when she was 4 years old (that made me 7 years old at the time).  My parents made the decision for her to continue on the path of oral communication; that meant that she learned to read lips, continue speaking, and eventually get a Cochlear implant .  It also meant that she attended mainstream schools – with support some services.
It also meant that she never learned to sign.
Until she went off to summer camp one year where she did. And it rocked her world.  Finally, she had found her tribe…and a method of communication that wasn’t so much work for her to master and one that felt natural.
Meanwhile, her older sister was caught up being a high school senior and junior college student who in her mind was wildly popular and in real life was wildly self-centered.  Off to college she went and, eventually, off to college her baby sister went. To the country’s top deaf university, and then to a mainstream university with a tight-knit deaf population, where she would make the transition to using ASL as her main form of communication.  Of course she would read lips and speak when she came home to visit her family, and at holidays and on breaks, but really, ASL had become her first language.
But her family was now a day late and a dollar short.
Until now.
I’m going to learn ASL doggone it. And so are my kids.
Their Auntie, my sis, deserves it.


  1. susandSusan Dognaux

    That is awesome! Our daughter is deaf and has a cochlear implant, so we’ve always been an oral family too. When her implant failed in the spring, we had a few weeks of being deaf, and we’d like to have ASL as an option. Learning ASL is on my life list too!

  2. Laurie White

    This is on my list too, Stacey! I was a hearing and speech science major at Maryland, and was ALWAYS closed out of the ASL classes. The program at MC is awesome. I’ll sign up if you do. :)

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