The Executive Director’s pulse
By Heather M. Hughes
On August 6, DAC hosted its first ever Back to School Bash. As our downstairs community room filled with families, sticky snow cone messes, and lots of giggles, a special moment happened between my son and another boy. My Zane turned to another boy and signed with wide eyes and a surprised face “Mother-Father Deaf Same (Your parents are deaf like mine)?” This moment sparked something special between them and the boys became fast friends as they ran off to play, sharing in the unique experience of being KODAs (Kids of Deaf Adults).
As the school year begins, I once again start the uncomfortable dance of introducing my deaf family, our culture, and our norms to a new teacher. As they meet me with fear and uneasiness, I worry how this will influence how they behave around my son. As KODAs, my kids think, talk, and act “different”. It can be a challenge for them to make friends as our family doesn’t operate the way most of their classmates’ families do.
Deaf Action Center is a refuge to many – not just deaf and hard of hearing people themselves, but their children, extended families, teachers, and community members, as well. It’s a place where you can find your people. People who have similar experiences to you and have gone through similar trials and obstacles. People who have similar fears and can celebrate similar triumphs. My goal is for Deaf Action Center to be a place where you see yourself and feel at home. A place where you can walk in and take a deep breath and feel, “Same”.