Saturday, October 11, 2008

God Bless the Broken Road

I’m sharing this as it is a beautiful depiction of language to me. Actually, I feel it not solely a language but a marvelous work of art. American Sign Language (ASL) is more a deaf persons true language; it is a real language in itself, while Signing Exact English (SEE) has proper English word order. This appears to be a graceful combination of both to me.

One of the reasons I was enamored with deaf studies was that in my free time during university I watched language burst forth time and time again in young children who were enrolled with our current student teachers. It seemed so effortless for them compared to me as a young adult attempting it. It was an alluring, and enticing way to avoid text books for awhile.

Consequently, I minored in deaf studies and learned very basic SEE. To this day, I am not fluent as with any language it takes daily interaction. I can understand it much better than present it. My partner in class was a young man with such proficient language skills and articulation that his deafness eluded me those early days of class. He enjoyed every minute of that secret. I soon found out he was not in my speech major, and attended to learn to sign as he wanted desperately to relate to the deaf community as he was in the speaking community his entire life. SEE was an obvious choice for him as he was fully immersed in proper English word order. This peer made for a wonderful partner because of his first hand experiences he shared. He was my first glance at the complications and controversy of choosing a particular mode of communication for the deaf or hearing impaired.

Branching out into those early days of actually graduating and teaching my own speech students, I had a quiet dream of using my minor some day. It never came to fruition and I had some disappointment and even personal loss within that. I don’t think I will ever feel comfortable with the way I released the dream, and so this song captures more than a romantic love story to me. It reminds me of the journey I’ve been on to find myself again and a connection with the Spirit that is settling my past and has written my future already and a loved ones days. I couldn’t envision a resolve let alone a happy ending, but it has been revealed to me that there is another dream and that I’m just a tiny part of a grander plan that is coming true as the lyrics say. There is beauty in the broken road and I can see that clearer now through God’s art work amongst my own human choices.


Heather said...

I am a great believer in everything happening for a reason, and I love this song!

So many things I had problems with when they were happening have proved later to have been a necessary way to get to something good.

Jan Lyn said...

I am too, Heather, but much necessary at times. :)

Us girls are just now dipping our toes back in the water with a bit of signing through song to see how it feels. They have told me that they do not want to loose that on top of other loss, so I am trying to honor the request. Music is a light way to go about it and fun. God's been good to allow us some clarity and a hand back in the dream in a tiny way. Bittersweet, but very happy too!

Thanks for your ministry here.

Jan Lyn xox