Rescued by an Angel in a Police Uniform
I had worked all day, then picked up my Deaf son (about 8 years old at the time) from his school bus. I was exhausted, but needed to stop at the grocery on the way home.
As we exited the store, a stranger was evidently waiting for us because he immediately asked me for money. If I had felt better I probably would have given him some — or food. I usually do give money to people asking for help.
But this time I was tired. I was unsettled by his look, and I just didn’t want to mess with him. I also thought if I just said “Sorry, I can’t” that he would argue with me, and I didn’t have the energy.
I then thought I had a good idea of how to extricate us from the situation.
I pointed to my ears, shook my head pretending to be deaf (I was already using sign language to talk to my son), and kept walking to the car.
At our van, I had forgotten the stranger. I was stowing groceries, still signing with my son.
I heard a voice saying “Can I help you with something?” in a stern manner. I turned around and saw a policeman had said that.
The stranger was right at my shoulder, arm raised, inches away from me and my purse! He had followed us to the van!
At that instant I knew he thought we were vulnerable. The policeman had gotten out of an unmarked car, and was walking towards us, his eye on the stranger. The stranger quickly walked away from us as I finished with the groceries. Maybe I should have stayed in case the policeman wanted my statement, but my usual response to trouble (run away fast) took over. I zoomed out of there while the policeman was talking to him.
It was a miracle the policeman was there at the exact moment we needed him. Maybe someone had reported being harassed by the stranger asking for money and the police had come to check it out. Or maybe the policeman just happened to be there. Whatever the reason, at that moment he was my protective angel.
It now seems strange that it had never occurred to me before that being deaf would mean being vulnerable in public.
LESSON LEARNED: Be aware of my surroundings, especially when I’m in a parking lot and my attention is easily focused on unloading groceries or talking to someone.
LESSON LEARNED: If a person has asked me for money, stay alert to where that person is as I walk.
LESSON LEARNED: I shouldn’t lie or pretend to get out of an uncomfortable situation. Even if I’m exhausted I should be truthful, and say “No, thank you” in a firm strong way, implying the opposite of vulnerability.
LESSON LEARNED: Miracles and angels are real, if you only look for them.
Games and YouTube Videos
Here are the links to my signing and cueing YouTube “Word Of The Day” channels. I post a new word every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Check it out and I would love to know what you think of them!
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Please join me for my new blog posts each Friday. Have fun with your ASL and/or Cued Speech Adventures!