This video talks about how we, as Deaf women, were impacted from influential Deaf women. My mother, Anna Marie, explains her experiences growing up in an oral school and in a non-signing home environment. Her inspirational role model was her neighbor, Mary Tanner, who happens to be Deaf and uses ASL. Anna Marie became fascinated with Mary and her Deaf husband who found herself engaged in real conversations for hours and hours almost everyday. Anna Marie is always grateful to have this opportunity to interact with elder Deaf woman that she made her world bigger by sharing information through ASL.
As for my part, it was a bit different. Coming from a Deaf family but going to a public school that didn’t provide any support services such as interpreters, it did not give me much of a choice to interact with Deaf role models to look up to but my mother. I am always fortunate to have my mother as my femtor that she always look for ways to make the best out of it for me. She sacrificed her time driving my Deaf sister and me going to a local school for the Deaf participating in Jr. NAD meetings two times a week and to other Deaf events. When I was in high school, I wanted to transfer to a school for the Deaf. Since there was no educational placement for me available in Pennsylvania, I was sent to American School for the Deaf. There, I had two Deaf teachers, Luisa Gasco-Soboleski and Betty Young who also became my femtors. They were my inspiration that they linked ASL to English making it easier for me to comprehend and improve my literacy skills. Back to my mother, she has high ethics that she always worked hard, sacrificed her time and being there for me. She invested a lot of her time to ensure that I meet my educational and social needs. I had always looked up to her on how she was firm to stand up for herself as an outspoken person and refused to let anyone to step over her toes. Her strong personality made me what I am today.
Today, I am fortunate to be surrounded by other Deaf women who make great femtors like Julie Rems-Smario. It is really a small world how my sister used to be her roommate and how much I recalled my sister mentioned Nancy Popovich as her role model. Also I met Raychelle Harris who went to the DBC Va. Rally and that her mother, Rachel Stone, whom I have never met is here! It gives me a warm fuzzy feeling that here we are together as a family. It is what makes it wonderful and unique about our femtorship (with the combination of being women and Deaf).
Thank you, Mom! Thank you, Luisa! Thank you, Betty! You are awesome femtors!!To view Part I, click here.
To view Part IIa, click here.
My mom's vlog, ASLRocksForever, click here.