Archive for March, 2009

Pictures

March 29, 2009

Here are some pics of my break 🙂

img_0045img_0052img_0072HOME

img_0076We were very surprised with this wall, many of the men in my family all served in the Army

img_0085Pushing my mommy 🙂 I wanted to walk 

img_0145The accident, the pic was taken when we were almost home.

img_0182This was after the twilight party my sister maya, jorge and cousin katie

img_0199My youngest nephew fell asleep in his horsey 🙂

cimg1175My doggie Angel. Given to me as my grandmother passes away last year.

cimg1179Signing in Church.

cimg1177Out of everything at home that I love. I have so much at home. SO much that I value. Yet when I get back on this campus this still feels like my home. This is where I belong. Gallaudet changes your perspectives on things. It is like a wake up call. The people of so many different backgrounds you meet here just amazes you.

That was how my spring break went .

SO glad to be HOME, until next time Tiffany

 

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Catching up

March 29, 2009

Wow I have not written in so long. There is going to be a million blog’s coming up here in the next few days. I am soooo absolutely sorry for not writing things have been quite busy for me. So I will start this blog off with spring break how things had gone for me over the break and then just start catching up then on :).

Over spring break I had decided to go home for the week. Originally the plan was for me to go to Costa Rica with my friends on the freshmen tour. Only problem was if I were to be stuck in my chair I thought that I was going to be bored I would not have been able to do everything that everyone else was doing. So my parents decided they would come here for a week and spend time with me here. As time went by the plans kept on changing. In the end it was my parents and uncle coming on Thursday to see the BELIEVE group perform. Only then to find out my father had to work. So once again it had changed. They came Friday morning. Leaving really late in the morning. My family is hearing but I swear they live by Deaf standard timing :).

Friday my parents were coming up I was so excited for them to be able to meet my friends here and see Gallaudet campus. I wanted them to see and notice why I wanted to stay here for school. They were right around the corner as Haley and I walked up to the hotel where we planned to meet them. Then I text’d my mom saying “whee soon!!!!” and only to get a reply “no accident”. I was freaking out. When they arrived I got the story as they were turning left some guy whipped out and ran into the passenger side of the truck. All was fine but the truck, is not really much of a truck anymore. I think it looks more like a bananas.

Anyhoo so we toured Washington D.C for a bit. And drove home on sunday I wanted to be home on monday so bad! My parents wanted to go through the mountains and tour on the way home and arrive on tuesday night. We are big Harley Davidson fans. So the goal was to stop at a few Harley stores on the way home. OMG I SAW SOME AMAZING 2009 BIKES!!!. This is where you see the tomboy in me :). My roommate thinks I am crazy when it comes to motorcycles. I ONLY like harleys, it is not a real motorcycle unless it is a Harley. So I have a minor obsession with bikes.

We stopped half way on sunday and stayed at a hotel, monday was the plan to get up and go to harley stores and arrive home tuesday :(. I wanted  to go home. I have this guy there he’s like my mentor. My Really good friends step dad. He is my hero. From the first time I asked to burrow his wheelchair there was a connection. He has multiple sclerosis and is a quad paralegic. Before I came to Gallaudet he had given mned to mee a speech of never giving up. That things will be hard, but no matter what keep faith and hope. Now I had some one who knew what I was going through, and for him in 22 years of being in a chair after he was walking for 20 years he has someone that he can relate to. I was able to have stability. Which was something that I had not had in awhile. And with that it was helping me quite a bit. So going home he was teaching me I could still be Tiffy no matter what happened. 

I told him I was not coming home until tuesday. Which meant less time to learn new things that I could do with my chair. Something he told me I would value once I had gotten it. I never thought I would now I treat it as if it is my kid. ANYHOW we ended up getting home monday night. Sam my bestie who is like my sister to me decided to come up with a plan. She took me to Jim, my hero’s. And we surprised him. I was quite glad my nephew’s new car toy was being built in the middle when I walked in that door. 

Over the week I had done quite a bit, I learned to bowl with a stick that graps the ball while you are in the chair. It takes some experiance and some work. It was fun :). I went swimming, Jim is a champion with lots of medals for swimming in the olympics as a quad. Meaning he only swims with his arms. Something I do as well. But as he made me do a lap they said my legs do move. So I guess that my legs do move. I love water you are free you can stand without pain :). I learned to drive with hand gears. TOTALLY NOT DEAF ABLE!!!! I realized I had so much fun. Within that week I had realized I had gotten myself back. The old TIffany I was getting my independence back.

Sunday I was at church. Oh gosh how much I miss my church. I have quite a bit of parcipatation within my church, I sign in the choir and in the performances to. I fit right in :))))

Anyhow so coming back i decided to fly back to D.C. First time I was flying back in a wheelchair. I had Jim take me to the airport so that I knew what to do. It would be much more comfortable. I wanted to go with my father, but this was something I needed. Over the next few years I would be flying quite a few times so just this once I figured might not hurt so much. 

Getting to the airport. WOW it was empty yet hectic. Going through security, I could write a million pages upon this subject. I will do my best to keep it short. I got hand searched, wand searched as well. My entire chair was swiped with a swab, my seat was swiped and examined as well. They even checked my TIRES!. Checked my shoes and swiped my socks!!! I was like “Are you serious????” It was so embarrassing as if they thought I was going to be popping bombs out of my tires or something.

So we made it through finally. Jim took even longer. I liked hearing the stories he would tell me. There are some fun stories as well as the stories that really make you mad. But when we would just tell stories about what happens sometimes when you are in a chair, really you would never understand unless you yourself was a person in a chair. Anyhow I was so happy to be getting back to Gallaudet. I missed it. I missed signing, friends, and the campus. I also missed I had easy access to transportation with the metro and so forth. I realized D.C (Dirty City) has so much more value to me than I had thought.

Ah so That was how my spring break was. 🙂

until next time Tiff.

My Spring Break

March 26, 2009

So for the last few weeks, I’ve been wandering around, doing whatever it is that needs to be done, but I kept getting this feeling that I was forgetting to do something. You know the feeling… something’s missing but you’re not quite sure what it is. Last week, I discovered what I was forgetting… my blog! I promise to get right back on the gblog track.

Anyway, spring break has come and gone and dozens of ridiculously tanned students walk the halls of Gally. I’m not much of a party person so Cancun, Acapulco, or Jamaica didn’t really interest me. I’m also cheap. I like my money to stay in my pocket, thank you very much. So for spring break, I went home to Minnesota and went on a road trip to Alabama.

I know… Alabama… that’s one of the strangest places you could go to on spring break, but my cousin works at the Alabama School for the Deaf and insisted that we visit her. So I flew home Wednesday before spring break started and drove down to Iowa to pick up my Aunt with my Mother on Thursday. Friday morning at precisely 5 am, we left for Alabama. We drove through Iowa, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, and Tennessee before finally arriving in Alabama. I spent a total of 14 hours riding in a minivan, watching my Aunt and my Mom chat and almost kill us all by narrowly missing a certain exit in St. Louis.

This blog is getting to be a bit long, and I know people don’t like reading long blogs, I know I don’t, all those words and no pictures get to be tiring. So, I’ll continue the rest of my spring break story the next time I post.

Cheers!
-Heather

I Heart Dirty City

March 25, 2009

I was pondering the other day about Gallaudetians complaining about Washington D.C. being the only location for a fully inclusive college, and that there should be more campuses around like it. I decided here would be an excellent place to express my opinions and thoughts regarding this issue. ‘Imagine Gallaudet in California! Oh my… no Texas!’ This kind of topic has been flying throughout the campus lately. It’s not a vacation…Washington D.C is a remarkable place! What are you guys talking about? I know there isn’t eternal sunshine, tall and lean palm trees, sandy beaches, with pina coladas, and martinis with mini bright colored umbrellas on top. It’s all about loose leafed papers, hard wooden pencils, and dull rubber pink erasers. I personally believe Gallaudet is in the perfect location, despite the somewhat trashy ghetto neighborhoods. You guys don’t realize how much Washington D.C can offer!! It provides good quality of information sources for everything not just only academic. Let me emphasis, the District of Columbia is a reasonable niche that a college student needs for college life.

*Museums – where every individual can have the access for no charge
*Metro – convenient, less time consuming trips to desired regions
*Bars and Night clubs – college nights for cheap

These are just a few examples from the top of my head. Not to mention there are another eight universities where Gallaudetians can socialize and meet a wide diversity of other students to create a whole new circle of friends. If you still think you do not like teh District of Columbia, just keep this in mind, you will be merely living here for your college years and it’s a great opportunity to experience and enrich the D.C life in short span of time. Enjoy it! Take it from somebody who ‘moved’ here from western Canada… D.C. is a great place!!

6 more weeks left until school is out!

March 25, 2009

Can you believe there is only six more weeks until school is out? I am excited to head home in California & spend my summer with all my family members and my friends. I have missed them  since I left California for the spring semester. This semester isn’t bad like last semester because I am  not as homesick as much as last semester. Time has gone so fast already. I can’t believe that I actually am almost done with my freshman year.  I totally am excited for the class of 2013 students to come in the fall.  I will be here for pre-season soccer training camp, and will see my CSD (California School for the Deaf, Fremont) friends who will enroll  for their first year.  I will be glad not to be called a freshmen any longer. I am totally done with being picked on for being a freshman and it will be my turn to pick on the new coming students.

— Janaee aka JC

the spring semester (new classes)

March 25, 2009

This semester is pretty tough for me with school, sports, and social life. It is harder than I thought and it is not the same as the first semester, but so far I am doing okay in school with my pre-major courses to take before I take any Education and Mathematics. I am planning to declare my major in the fall of 2009 or spring of 2010. This semester I am taking five classes which are Linguistics 101, Psychology 201, History 111, General Studies Requirements 150 (GSR 150), and Basic Spanish.

I like my Linguistics 101 and Basic Spanish because it is easy and I understand the language concepts in the classes. Two out of five classes are pre-major classes  required to be prepared to become a teacher.  I want to become a math teacher someday.  My major would be Education and Mathematics hopefully. I can minor in Spanish because I like to learn new  cultures and  languages. If I declare a minor in Spanish, I would have an internship somewhere where people use Spanish as a first language. It will give me a chance  to teach at any Spanish school and it might count for both my Education major and Spanish minor for the internship. I will talk with my (Vocational Rehabilitation) VR counselor and see if I can declare my minor.

— Janaee aka JC

I am back!

March 25, 2009

Hello,

I finally am back to the site, GBLOG. I had a few crazy months since I got back to Gallaudet from Christmas break in California. A lot of things  happened at Gallaudet University and  I will mention few of the good things.

I left California to go back to school on the day when President Obama entered the office for the first time as a 44th President & the first African-American president in the U.S. History. Once I got there to Baltimore-Washington International Airport (BWI), almost all the transportation sites were closed and I was stuck with the Amtrak train to take me to Union Station. Somehow Union Station was closed and blocked off for a few blocks of the road.  I had to walk down the street to look for a taxi until I became lost and alone in Washington DC near Union Station. It was pretty cold to stand as I stood around waiting for a taxi for 30 to 45 minutes.

It was really nice to be back to campus and see all my friends. It also wasn’t cool for me to deal with the 3 hour time adjustment the first day of school in the next day. It took my body about a week and a half to adjust to the time differenec. I also went through the hard times the first two weeks dealing with the deaths of some friends, but I had to face those facts with the deaths and I found another way to move on because I knew the people who were dead are watching over me, my family, my friends, and my friends’ families. It was tough dealing with that a day before  softball tryouts.

The day of the softball tryouts, I was in no shape to practice after hearing the horrible facts back at home and I couldn’t practice.  I was thinking about my friend and what he was  going through without a mom in his life who doesn’t have a chance to see him graduate from high school in 2012 or see her other kids graduate. After the first day, I still was in the head of shock because I couldn’t believe it did happened and I couldn’t imagine what was it is like if I was in my friend’s shoes. The second day of  softball tryouts was better than the first day, but all I can think about was my friend and his family and what did they were going through.

After softball tryouts, I learned I made the team.  I had no skills related to softball except my awesome speed that is needed for the team.  I still am one of the most fastest players on the team and I am so proud of myself for everything that I have done to put a lot of effort in making the team.

We also had our second snow day at Gallaudet and all my classes were canceled.  I was so happy  because I was desperate to catch up with homework and prepare ahead of time to make up the classes that I missed due to softball away games. It was really nice to have our snow days for once before the spring season comes.

— Janaee aka JC

Made a choice this morning…

March 25, 2009

I missed my geography class this morning. The reason is that I didn’t get enough sleep last night, and while I was driving to school, I was literally falling asleep on the road. I knew it wasn’t safe, but I pressed on for a few more miles because I felt I must go to class! We didn’t have a test or anything, but I like this class and the teacher and I didn’t want to miss it. Finally I had to decide to pull over in a parking lot and take a nap. I felt really bad about missing class, but it was either that or get into a car accident. Which is less responsible, missing class, or driving drowsy? I decided on the latter and I had to solve that problem first. My afternoon class was already canceled, so when I woke up I drove out to my wife’s workplace and we had lunch. I think in the end I made the right decision, but I do still feel bad about missing class.

Science Vs. God

March 23, 2009

You know that feeling when it seems like God keeps mentioning the same thing to you over and over through different people, readings, events, or whatever, but that one particular message is always popping up in some form or fashion and it suddenly hits you that God is trying to tell you something? That’s the feeling I got yesterday.

It started when a friend of mine wrote a note on Facebook. She was talking about God’s mercy and grace and how God had changed this one man’s life for the better. Well, a friend of hers who is an atheist started saying some mean things to her about the story she told. She could have stood on her own, but I hate to see friends persecuted alone so I wanted to “stand up” with her on the message she was trying to convey.

When I started typing up a response to the atheist, I knew that he would probably respond in the same way that many atheists have towards me in the past: he would probably insult my intelligence, tell me I was a lunatic (just like my friend), and that I was not even worth having a good debate with. Well, he said all of those things and, as a response to a personal testimony I gave of God’s mercy in my life and my grandmother’s life, he also asked me if I wanted to ask him to kill me so that I could be with my Creator since “We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord” (2 Corinthians 5:8). However, even though this is true, Christians have been called by God to be messengers in this world–to be in the world but not of it.

After I read the atheist’s threatening response, I started thinking. I know that I have blogged several times about freedom of speech (or the lack thereof) and about responses that I have received because of my writings or blogs that are similar to those of this particular guy. Admittedly, I was a little overwhelmed with the extent of this guys hatred towards me that would go so far as to threaten my life. But, after a while, God kept bringing some things to mind. What He was trying to show me can best be explained with a story–a story that a friend reminded me of last night. At the risk of having some nasty replies to this story, I am going to go ahead and post it. It goes like this:

There once was a young Christian man who attended a college philosophy class taught by a professor who was an atheist. The professor told the class that he was going to explain the problem science has with Jesus Christ. He asks the Christian to come to the front of the class for a discussion–a demonstration. The professor begins by asking the boy several questions to establish the fact that this boy does in fact believe in God, believes that God is good, believes that God is all-powerful, and that he believes that God can do anything.

The professor then asks, “Are you good or evil?” The boy responds that the Bible says that he is evil. The professor starts getting excited. He comes up with a situation–there is a sick person who needs help–and he asks the boy, “Would you help him?” The boy replies with a “yes” and the professor exclaims, “So you are good!” And, again, the boy says that is not good.

The professor goes on to say that anyone who helped the sick person would be good. He said that most people would try and help if they could, but, he said, God doesn’t help. The professor elaborated, “What if that sick person was a Christian? What if he prayed for God to heal him and God never intervened? Is God still good?”

The Christian answers “yes” but answers “no” to the following question when the professor asks him if Satan is good. The professor asked the young man where Satan came from and he answered, “From God.”

“That’s right. God made Satan. Is there evil in this world?” The professor asked.

“Yes, sir.”

“Who created evil then? If God created everything, then God created evil and since evil exists,according to the principle that our works define who we are, then God is evil. You believe in Jesus, right? Science says that you have five senses to help you identify and observe the world around you. Have you ever seen, heard, touched, tasted or smelled your Jesus? If not, then science says that your God does not exist. All you have is your ‘faith’. That’s the problem science has with God. There is no evidence, only ‘faith’.”

The student during most of this exchange has remained mostly quiet, answering questions but nothing more. But then he asks the classroom, “Has anyone in the class ever seen, heard, touched, tasted, or smelled the professor’s brain?”

The class laughs and replies “no.”

“So, according to the established rules of demonstrative protocol, science says that the professor has no brain. So, we have to take it with faith that the professor DOES in fact have a brain. Do you teach your students that they evolved from a monkey, Professor?”

“Well, if you are referring to the natural evolutionary process, then yes, I do.”

“Have you ever observed evolution with your own eyes?”

“No,” the professor replied.

“Since no one has actually SEEN this process of macro-evolution, are you then believing it with faith? Are you then teaching your faith, which is your opinion, sir? Are you now not a scientist, but a preacher?”

The professor was silent.

The student then asks the professor, “Is there such thing as cold?”

“Yes, of course,” the professor replied.

“No, sir, there isn’t. You can have lots of heat, more heat, super heat, unlimited heat, white heat, a little heat, and no heat, but there is no such thing as ‘cold’. We can hit 458 degrees below zero, which is ‘no heat’, but we cannot go any colder than ‘absolute zero’ because objects can only be studied when it has or transmits energy and ‘heat’ is what is used to measure energy. Absolute zero is the total absence of heat. We cannot measure cold. Cold is not the opposite of heat. Cold is just a word that we use to describe the absence of heat. Is there such thing as darkness, Professor?”

“Yes, without darkness, we would not have night.”

“No, sir. There is no such thing as darkness. You can have low light, normal light, bright light, flashing light, piercing light, but if you have no light, if you have an ABSENCE of light, then you have what we call ‘darkness.’ You cannot make darkness darker or night night-er.”

The professor began to wonder what the student was trying to say and so he asked him. The student replied, “Your philosophical premise is flawed so your conclusion is also flawed. You are working with the premise of duality. You say there is life and death and a good God and a bad God. You are explaining God as something finite, something we can measure. Science cannot even explain the process of thought. We know that it uses electricity and magnetism but we have never seen or fully understood these processes. To view death as the opposite of life is to be ignorant of the fact that death cannot exist as a substantive thing. Death is not the opposite of life; it is the absence of it.

“Now, one last question. Is there evil in the world, Professor?”

“Yes, we see it everyday. There is the daily example of man’s inhumanity towards his fellow man. There is crime, violence, and many other manifestations of evil in the world today.”

“Evil does not exist, Sir. Just like with life and death where death cannot stand alone, evil cannot stand alone either. Evil is not the opposite of good. Evil is the absence of God. Evil is a word just like ‘darkness’ and ‘cold’ that people created to describe the absence of something. God did not create evil. Evil is the result of what happens when people do not have the presence of God’s love in their hearts. It’s like the cold that comes with no heat or the darkness that comes with no light. When there is no God, there is what we call ‘evil’.”

El fin.

I do not know if this story is real or what happens after the student made his point about evil. But despite the fact that the story may not have really happened and despite the fact that I got the story from an email, there are some revealing truths in what is said between the professor and student. This story depicts the messages God has kept bringing to my attention the past few days. I hope that no matter what you believe–whether you agree or disagree with this story–that you think about it. May it challenge you in your faith as it has in mine.

Home Sweet Home!

March 22, 2009

I am calling this campus my second home already… There’s no place like home at Gallaudet. Crossing a big fat red ‘X’ over the little box on the calendar and sighing ‘what a spontaneous day eh!’ Nothing beats being a Gallaudetian. Each day is filled with classes and afterwards volleyball and basketball games to watch along with loud, and high spirited and sometimes slightly luncatic fans painted in yellow and blue. The walks to the cafeteria still give me chills up my spine. Every time I take a glance through the window it’s always crowded with energetic, dynamic students with their unstoppable moving hands. The cafeteria continually leads you into stimulating conversations with random new faces; talk about networking. It’s one of the biggest advantages that Gallaudet offers with a smaller student body. Random warm hellos in hallways are inspiring and can make you feel welcome, no matter how new the experience here is. I love how American Sign Language is a priority on campus, and not something only a few people know. It’s such a blessing to know it’s a place that could supply everything a deaf individual needs. Everyday this campus is filled with adventure! Sitting at home eating dinner with my family made me realize how quiet it is compared to Gallaudet. It’s something that you will never have in your own home. I am going to cherish every second while living up my college years at Gallaudet, no joke!