[Podcast real-time, unedited]
Hi, this is Melanie. And I've been traveling for the past four days with my sister Connie. And I wanted to talk a little bit about what it feels like to travel deaf.. And what some of the things I discovered along the way that are just amazing. And some of it, some of it a serious struggle.
So when I was on the freeways in Southern California, a lot of traffic and it was about five hours I was stuck in traffic. And when you're deaf, you don't hear anything outside of yourself, meaning I didn't hear that truck. I can't hear the music on the radio I get here like Pandora after a WiFi, or through Bluetooth or Spotify or any of my favorite iTunes tracks. I can't listen to podcasts. I can't talk when I'm on the phone with someone because I might have looked at what they're saying back. So five hours. Normally I love day trip would be like an exciting thing for me and I really struggled because it felt like forever and you know it's it there's some things that I'm still grieving and I I discovered that I'm grieving the freedom to go on a road trip and make it entertaining for myself. Because when all you're doing is looking you know my eyes were sore from the sunlight and you know the strain and you know, I made it I made it through but and I'm super I it's amazing when you're driving, when you're deaf you have I've read some studies on it that like your peripheral vision is expanded beyond what a normal driver is. And I believe it because I have gotten really good at like my eyes circle all the mirrors in the car, like on a regular basis just to just be completely aware of everything in my surroundings. And so my eyes are doing a lot of work extra work.
So anyway, we got I got to Joshua Tree and met up with my sister, and we're having an absolute blast, but you know, I'm having surgery soon. So and it turns out that the vaccinations that I got the antibodies have worn off, I just found out so I have to wear masks just to protect myself for pre surgery and you know when Connie and I are in the car so anyway, we that is all different experience because you know, I can talk, but I can't hear what you say. And she can hear what I'm saying. But she can't really communicate through talking with me because I can't hear.
So we had to stop at the dollar store and get these whiteboards and so she writes down everything that she wants to say to me so that I can read it. And we're navigating Joshua Tree park with a whiteboard tab and it's absolutely beautiful. So but here's the thing as when I say I can't hear anything that's 1/3 true. Because I hear, I have tinnitus so I hear this really annoying high pitch. I really high pitch it's almost like the sound I saw are like the dentists you know it just it's just a whirling hybrid sound and it it's all the time 24 seven, it doesn't go away and I know that's a symptom. So it's something that I have to deal with. And the other thing that I hear, which is on a really low scale, so I hear a high pitched like a metal drill sound, And then I hear a really low pitch sound that sounds like if you're standing by rocks, it's the ocean and waves crash on the rocks like really violently. And yeah you know, so I hear I hear the loudness of the ocean waves against rocks. And I did drilling sound all the time in the background of my head and I and those are symptoms of you know I still do some research on tinnitus because apparently I'm I can't even believe I've been dealing with it for six months Surely it's very draining, to try to focus and concentrate when you have that kind of that kind of noise in your head.
And yet,, at the exact same time, I hear nothing. So there's this loud background distraction with absolute silence. I don't hear myself. I don't hear any I am nothing and except for what's being generated with nerves or the neurons or whatever they are from the tinnitus. So that means a five hour drive really long I you know, it'll, it gives me a headache. And it's exhausting. Because the focus it takes to rise above those noises is really challenging. Which takes me to let's see, I guess this would be Episode Three of resolute courage. So I was we were in the desert here driving around, and it's so beautiful, real desert in Joshua Tree. So it's not like a million acres or something. So Connie, and I've been exploring all of the different sets and the different cactus places and it's each it's all the same, but it's really different. And we got to this place where I was while while I'm driving around and my sister's on a one mile hike. So I'm in the car waiting for and I just had a lot on my mind so I wanted to I wanted to talk about it and it's it's that I was thinking about the settlers in the gold rush. There's some mines out here and mines and dams and things that are obviously dried up now but there's the remnants of it from back in the early 19 hundred's through the depression. And I was like how do people crop this? You know, I mean, there's cactus everywhere there's rocks and sagewood and tumbleweeds like i a pioneer I'm not, but yet I am… because I always read your forward to the unknown. And those pioneers had resolute courage they just went for it and you know i i i i wish i could interview one of them and say what was it really like you know so anyway, that's that's been interesting.
So but here's here's something that and I get really emotional right now I'm using my voice memos. I'm sitting in the car and I can't we have no service no Wi Fi nothing so I'm not able to video this part but I we were we went to this song. We went to this one stop. And it was just us and it was super windy. So we ended up having our picnic in the car and watching out over this beautiful vintage landscape and there was these two men that got out of the car and I was watching them because you know I'm a people watcher. And one of them had a cane I thought it was A walking cane and the other one was younger and he was like holding the older guys. You know he had his arm out and the older guy hadn't been rested on his arm and they were walking down the trail.
A little bit, and they were going slow, and they would stop. And they would, they would be talking to each other, They didn't go very far. And then they'll go another 10 or 12 feet. And I said, Connie, you know, it's like really interesting what wonder what they're doing. And I said, it looks like they're, they're really taking in the environment around them. I just hadn't seen anyone so descriptive. And, and like so into the environment. I said,
Oh, that's not a walking cane. That's a blind stick. And he, the older man was blind, and he was using his seeing stick, or whatever they call it. And he was feeling the ground. And walking along the path, and the man that was with him, was describing what he saw, to the blind man.
And I was like, well, he's really explaining a lot of things. And my sister goes, Melanie signing. So the blind man was signing to the deaf man, and the deaf man was talking to the blind man. And I don't know it just so you know, there's a lot of things that touched my heart, but I thought, beautiful moment to witness. There's two people what get the one seeing, and heard, they're taking in the desert. scenery together. And bam, I'll tell you what, I just I just thought to myself, you know, there's, there's always a way to communicate. You just have to reach out and look for, you know, and watching these two signing, because the blind man would hold the man signing and feel as hands so he could feel what he was saying. And you know, the blind man, I mean, a deaf man was signing it. And you can see that the blind man was looking all around to understand what he was saying. Even though he couldn't see. I don't know, it's just it's just one of those moments that you take a photograph in your heart, and your soul puts it in that special place where you never forget.
So that's what I wanted to talk about is, so how do I get how do I, you know, navigate this strange place that I'm in? And, you know, it's right. There says, What? What? My soul is right? It just needs to go slow. And trust that my guide will show up.
I mean, right now I was gone. And she's helping me. You know, I like I asked questions like, Is there any noise The desert is there? Can you hear the wind, like, so she's helping me navigate. And that's just, it was her birthday, a milestone birthday, and we had a great time and I'm so blessed. But I just, I have a long drive back on the freeway, we've gone a driving her to the airport on the way and tomorrow. And then it's just me, the droning sound, the pounding ocean and nothingness. And that is a really strange feeling in my head.
So I just I'm really glad that I'm super present and all of me is right. here now and you know that, that the gifts that I've been given are true blessing in itself in and of itself. And, you know, so what is it that you're navigating you know, that you're afraid are just, you know, something you need to do and you just don't know how to do it and and you know what?
What can your soul do to prepare to receive the guy that's coming for you for them to walk as far as a journey with you, I just find that so fascinating. I must have had many, many guides that showed up in my life that I just didn't even see because I was all in my head. And now it's like, my heart was touched by that image of the two man. You know what? Walking through the desert and right now it's my soul is fascinated and curious about what guides what guides are out there for us. You know, when do we even recognize them. And I can tell you firsthand that that is one of the biggest gifts because my soul is my art in my mind. And even my body has been humbled to say out loud, I need a guide. I need out you know, please let me see the guide recognize a guy when they show up for me. So that's what I had to say for today. And I want to thank you for listening and again, I just this is just a simple voice recording on my phone where I'm completely off the grid in the most spectacular part of Joshua Tree bar with my sister enjoy a sister weekend or over the weekend with his sister a little mini trip and you know, I am truly blessed and I I just want to thank you for listening and hope that somewhere in this, you, you found some curiosity to seek the help around you as a guide that you need in your life. And, you know, accepted receiving is hard for a lot of people it was really hard for me, but it's okay to receive help and it's okay to walk with a guide. I learned that So anyway, I wish you have a wonderful day and othinus ahead of you. And in wherever you're going just resolute courage just just take the bath and just go you know, it's all right, you'll get there. Anyway, until I see you at the next episode. Thank you for listening. Bye
hear, joshua tree, tinnitus, guide, car, sister, resolute, desert, deaf, soul, man, thought, blind, talk, navigate, connie, driving, rocks, feel, walking
"Every positive action counts, and when compounded over time... amazing things WILL happen!" Melanie Jean Burke