An unexpected surprise showed up on my doorstep this week—a blast from my past. Years ago, and I mean years, (before I had children), I became an interpreter for the deaf. It was the one and only job I’ve ever had that I didn’t go searching for—it found me.
When twin deaf boys moved to the small town I was living in, I received a call from the desperate school district. They needed an interpreter, and through the prevalent rumor mill every small town has, they’d been told I knew sign language.
Yes, it wasn’t a lie, I could string a few sentences together in sign language, and I had taken many college courses on the subject, but to be an interpreter? Holy Cow talk about being tossed out of your comfort zone.
No one else could be found, so I took the job. At first, it was on the premise I would interpret until someone more qualified could be found. It didn’t take long for me and school to realize they didn’t need to find anyone else. I was more than capable for the job.
I will forever be grateful I chose to take that risk. Those three years I spent working with those boys taught me things about myself I might never have discovered if I hadn’t taken the opportunity to step out of my comfort zone.
And that’s who was on my door step, one of those boys. He’d tracked me down, to show me what he’d made of himself. With hands flying, he talked about his job, wife, and children. I couldn’t have been prouder at what he’d done with his life.
I told him he had to come back so I could redeem myself. I had to keep telling him to slow down and many signs I couldn’t remember anymore. I guess the old saying is true; if you don’t use it you’ll lose it. I definitely need to bush up on my sign language—it’s been too long.