Today, I’ve spend seven hours on writing my doctoral comp finals. After a nap, I’m ready to go back to the three screens I have open and the stack of books on my table. But before I do, I want to comment about the Deaf Crows who went up to Saskatoon and set up a table at the Deaf Deaf World and did my presentation for me. My decision not to go to the Deaf Deaf World was difficult. To bail out on John Warren who asked me way back in February to do this presentation was rather humiliating. I handed over the presentation to our Deaf elder, Allard Thomas and the actors in Deaf Crows, including four students who all travelled up to participate in the Deaf Deaf World, a Deaf expo designed to enlighten, inform and celebrate ASL and Deaf culture. And I knew they would do a fabulous job. I was not needed. Not really. My PhD finals trumped my agenda.
I feel humbled in relinquishing the need for power and control to the Deaf Crows students and the adult Deaf. The joy and enthusiasm with which they supported my decision to stay back in Regina and to take over for me taught me that is better for them that I go away. Community building is best when I leave, after having worked to empower those to take their place within community. Knowing my penchant for controlling everything right down to determining where a paper clip should go, the joy in their faces, hands, and bodies stunned me. I do not have to do everything. Our community here in Regina has grown beyond my leadership. They are learning to become their own catalysts in the community, to take their rightful place. The Deaf Crows are our new leaders.
It is better for you that I go away. Not forever, not always, but certainly retreating to the background and letting the Deaf Crows pop up in the field like wildflowers abundant in their diversity and beauty. I am so immensely proud of the Deaf Crows. They are learning the collective behaviours that are promoted in the Deaf community rather than trying to emulate the individualist narrative of becoming a successful “hearing” person. Their joy, their strength in embracing challenges and their love is humbling. Deaf Crows rock!!!!
Indeed, it is better for you that I go away.