Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Nope. Not Sorry.

A month or so ago, I'd brought the kids to an indoor pool.  I was waiting outside the stalls in the changing room as the kids got dressed when a girl, 12 years old or so, walked up to me and grabbed my hand.

A nanosecond was all it took to see the specialness of this girl.

She held my hand in one of hers and waved in my face with the other.  And smiled.

I signed/said 'Hello'. Guessing that she wasn't verbal and thinking my non verbal communication skills couldn't hurt.

She held on and smiled.

I complimented her on her pretty flowered bathing suit.

She pumped my hand a few times and continued her smiling.

Her mother appeared after 30 seconds of this.  I signed/said to the girl that it was nice to meet her.  She smiled back.

Her mother hung her head;

"I'm sorry."

"Oh god no. Have fun swimming!"

I really wanted to chase after the woman. And hug her.  And beg her to never apologize again for her sweet girl who just wanted to smile and say hi.

This past Spring break, I thought about this woman a few times. 

Because I'm not sorry.

Hey Mommies and Kids sitting behind us at the kiddie concert at the Library;

Yes, I was aware that the front row is usually reserved for the smallest children.  But Owen can't hear very well.  So being in the front, where he can see the musicians is where he had the best chance of enjoying the show.

I'm not sorry if we were distracting.

When the drums and guitar started up, Owen's face lit up.  He does love music.  But when the fedora wearing sideburned cutie started singing, Owen's face fell, and my eyes filled up.

The acoustics in the place were shit.  The lyrics lost to Owen.

So instead of letting him give up, I offered to interpret for him.  He shook his head no. So I started to interpret anyway.  And he let me.  And watched intently as I struggled to hear the words and put them on my hands.

Right in the front of the room.

I'm not sorry if we obstructed your view of the band.

I'm not sorry at all if you had to answer a squillion questions from your kids.

Not sorry even a little bit.

Hey people sitting behind us at the movie on Sunday;

Owen doesn't get to see his school friends outside of school very often.  So we were all thrilled when his friend Jay joined us to see 'Chimpanzee' on Sunday.

I didn't know it was Jay's first time in a movie theater.  Even I was surprised when the movie started up and Jay yelled and covered his ears.

I can't imagine what that loudness sounded  like through his cochlear implants.

I'm not sorry that Jay spoke loudly and signed largely through the entire movie.

He couldn't hear the narrator well enough to follow the story, so relied on me to fill him in.

I'm not sorry if you missed some of the action because our arms and hands were all over the place.

I'm not a wee bit sorry if we had a negative impact on your movie experience.

Jay is going to join us for the highly anticipated 'Avengers' movie in May.

I'm already brushing up on my Superhero signs.

And I'm already not sorry for being in your fucking way.


  1. And I'm not sorry to know you. Not sorry at all. I only wish I lived closer to go to the Avenger's movie with you.

  2. Ugh. I'm sorry those people and their stink eyed opinions can't put themselves in other peoples shoes and gain a little compassion.

  3. Now I love going to the movie theater because they now provides caption view device for the captioning. Check this website. http://captionfish.com/

  4. I think you should get a t-shirt made. "I'm NOT sorry." The back could say "Fuck You".

    1. I'd buy one for each member of my clan. :)

    2. Let's make 'em, I would buy one for everyone I know :)

  5. As a mom, I would LOVE to field questions from my child on what your signs meant and why they are needed! I would probably shuttle my kid over to you to learn more. I would hope you would appreciate my family's enthusiasm to learn about your family. Too bad more families aren't as eager to learn and accept. Keep signing in front of everyone!

  6. People will continue to shock the shit out of me till the day I die.

    They suck.

    And I have tears in my eyes for their major suckitude.


  7. I love that you are such a fearless advocate for your son. My daughter is deaf and signs, and her older brother has down syndrome. It can be hard to give them the same opportunities without making them feel entitled to special treatment. I wish parents would think about all the obstacles just getting through the day can involve.

  8. I AM sorry that I would be one of those parents who didn't know more about the situation before getting my shit in a snit.
    This should set more bitches like me straight. :-)

  9. goddammit Tulpen, quit making me cry!

    (hormonal and NOT apologizing for it)

  10. i second the T-shirt idea...

  11. This. THIS is why you're a fucking awesome mother and ally to your son and all disabled people, young and old.

    Keep on not being sorry.

    I'm also not sorry when I make involuntary noises in the cinema, if the glow from my communication aid's screen is distracting in a darkened theatre, or if moving a few tables to make room for me and my powerchair in a restaurant is inconvenient.

  12. I love this post. So many apologies to retract...

    1. And now I love it even more for not having Captcha...

  13. You fucking rock....never ever apologize for doing right by a child!

  14. Good. You have no reason to be sorry.

  15. I see no reason, in any of those scenarios, for you to be sorry.

    But you know you kick-ass for getting ready with superhero signs, right?

  16. You are a superhero.
    (you are.)

  17. I seriously want to see those superhero signs.
    And that little girl, MELT!

  18. Tulpen, you whore. Making me teary eyed over here.
    Do not be sorry ever (Like you would) and I think decent human beings would have more common courtesy - especially adults - to realize that the world hosts a huge array of people. Hearing / seeing / deaf, etc. Jesus, what a bunch of assholes we live around.
    side note, we saw Chimpanzee on Sunday, too - I loved it. cried, too. goddamn baby.

  19. That is a real momma. Never afraid and never sorry for defending her own. Wonderful.

  20. well good for you!

    after reading this i KNOW i will be sympathetic and understanding if i ever encounter someone signing in a movie theater!

  21. You are a rock star.
    I don't know what's wrong with people, because had I seen you all, it would have warmed my heart.

  22. YES! Let's try for no unnecessary apologies 2012....or ever.

  23. I don't see anything for you to be sorry for either. :)

  24. Meh. Being sorry is overrated. It's not accepted when you mean it and it's expected when it shouldn't be.

    Good for you.

  25. You are the wind beneath my wings...

  26. Never be sorry!

    I would have nothing to explain to my kids, we are blessed to go to a FANTASTIC school who also happens to have a rather large population of great kids who just happen to talk with their hands rather than their mouths. Abby happens to have had one join her in her Kindergarten class recently but her teacher has always taught them signs even before he came. It is very present at school events where they sit at the front of assemblies with an interpreter in front of them. So my kids would think nothing is out of the ordinary if they saw you helping Owen enjoy & understand a movie or concert . Our school also participates in the Special Olympics raising tons of money & sending the entire school to the local event to cheer on their class mates!-Like I said it really is an awesome school, if you ever find yourself longing to move to the South I can hook you up with a great school for both of them :) Only problem is there is no beach close and it is HOT as HELL here in the summer and warm the rest of the time & only occasionally pretending to have a winter.

  27. You are the best mom! What I love is that you're also teaching your children (and their friends) not to worry about what other people think of them. You have nothing to be sorry or ashamed about.

  28. rock on with your bad self. Hey - joy's comment mentions moving to the south. that is a great idea! as long as her version of south is NC.

  29. you SAY it girl! dont be sorry at all! i should take a lesson from you bc i (like the mom at the pool) am constantly apologizing ... and for what? for living with my daughter on this earth? yeah, i gotta rethink this! :)

  30. Can I come with you to the movie? I think it'll be better with you guys

  31. I heart you - that is all.
    Actually maybe not - have a link for Who do you speak for ... it was truly made for you.
    Yes indeed.
    Of course that isn't what I was coming over to tell you ;)


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