Friday, May 22, 2015

Common ground at the barn

I was trying Limerick’s new mosquito mesh fly gear on her last night (a purchase of belly band extenders is warranted, and the boots will be returned in exchange for a larger size) when I saw the husband of a new boarder petting his wife’s horse in a dark stall.

I flicked on the light switch for that horse’s stall. “Here’s the switch for the light,” I said.


“The light switch—it’s here if you want it,” I said.

“I’m sorry?”

Abruptly finding myself on the other side of the glass, I realized he was hard of hearing and repeated myself a third time.

He thanked me and I returned to Limerick. A few moments later he asked me what the mosquito mesh was for. I told him that Lim hates mosquitoes and that they couldn’t penetrate the fabric, which I held up to show him. He apologized for not hearing me the first time and pointed to the tiny hearing aids in his ears. I smiled and laughed and said, “It’s okay, I can’t hear well, either!” and pointed to the digital hearing aid in my left ear.

He said he began losing his hearing as a young man and needed to get the hearing aids at age 45, and now he was 70. He asked me when I began to lose my hearing and I told him I had meningitis when I was very little.

Our words and curious looks danced around one another. It was fascinating to have this sort of discussion, and I could tell he felt the same way.

We talked about Limerick a little bit, and when his wife returned from returning some grooming supplies to the tack room, he relayed a summary of our discussion to her. With that, goodbyes were said.

This man and I could not have been more different, yet we found common ground in our deafness. Although I already knew this, our encounter was a reminder that being open-minded can take you on the most interesting excursions. 

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Limerick on the grass

Christine sent me this photo of Lim grazing in turnout on Monday. Doesn't she look happy?

Friday, May 15, 2015

Happy 24th birthday, Limerick!

Yesterday was Limerick's 24th birthday. A box of gingersnap cookies courtesy of my husband, and a lot of cuddling, was the order of the day. 

Thursday, April 30, 2015

It's always nice to see your horse doing this after recovering from a hoof abscess.

I free-lunged Limerick on Sunday to see how her feet were. To my relief, she was sound and I was able to ride her Monday and yesterday.

Here are a couple clips from Sunday:

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Quick update: Limerick, Calusa Red breaking his maiden, and Deaf Women History Month

Limerick developed a hoof abscess a couple weeks ago so our riding has been on hold, unfortunately. She seems to be slowly returning to normal, however, so hopefully we're back in the swing of things soon. She has been doing well otherwise, and has her boyfriend Call Shot wrapped around her little hoof.

Lim after being groomed last night. She is not impressed by camera phones!

Christine's homebred racehorse, Calusa Red, broke his maiden in his third start last Saturday. I was already there to shoot the Illinois Derby so the timing couldn't have been better. I was absolutely thrilled and that race was the most exciting part of the week. You can see these photos on my Medium publication, Racing Reviewer.

Lastly, I came across this article today about Deaf Women History Month. The article was published April 1 and Deaf Women History Month is apparently March, so the timing is a little odd, but I thought it was pretty cool. I can attest that intense observations of social behavior and a deep sense of empathy are traits that I also carry with me. 

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

The dapples are emerging, so spring is officially here.

Limerick's dapples have begun to emerge from beneath layers of shedding winter hair and dirt, not unlike the blades of green grass and daffodil leaves emerging in yards and gardens around here.

I am no poet but I was inspired to write this:

Dead vegetation
And hair
Flattened by pressure
From wind and hand
Float away
To feed the earth
And leave behind
Blooming dapples and life

Monday, March 30, 2015

A deaf receptionist in the White House

Today I read this article about a deaf woman acting as the gatekeeper to the Oval Office--and the President.

I think that's quite amazing, and I hope that people around the country read this and realize that there is little that the deaf cannot do.

It's been 7 years since I last needed to search for a job but I remember the discrimination I faced during the search. In fact, this blog was started during that time frame partly in response to that discrimination.

In the years before and since, I have encountered discrimination in various forms. I have a thick skin and most of the barbs tossed my way--whether intentional or not--don't penetrate because the people doing the throwing have no power over me. But once in a while, they do have such power--nurses, doctor's office managers, potential employers, friends, family members, and so on. And most of these people are basing their discrimination upon what they assume I cannot do.

And in assuming, they forget what I can do, and what I am--an intelligent, creative, observant, capable individual. The only thing I cannot do for certain is talk on the phone, which isn't a big deal in this era. My only request is that people look at me when talking to me so that I may read their lips.

Most of us have limitations. What are yours? How do you work around them--if at all?