Back to the blog. Great News! I’ve finished my book Life and Deaf. It’s off to my second editor. The next steps are publishing, formatting, add photos, blogging, PR, etc…Will it ever end? Here’s a synopsis of my story.
Life and Deaf begins with the story of young married life with my husband Lt. Ray Hines at Ft. Bliss, Texas in 1966. The Viet Nam War was just ratcheting up. He was assigned to one of the missile bases. I got a job teaching fourth grade at an elementary school on the border of El Paso, Texas and Juarez, Mexico. I loved my students and we decided to try for a child of our own. I quickly became pregnant, but our excitement dampened early on when I found out I had contracted German Measles from one of my students. This common childhood disease could cause birth defects in unborn babies, especially deafness.
Ray was lucky he was not sent to Viet Nam. Our baby son was not so lucky. Diagnosed with profound deafness we decided to search the country for the best auditory oral school we could find. We sold our house, bought a van and became wandering hippies until we found the best school for Scooter in Colorado. With intelligence and independence he learned to speak, not sign and became successfully integrated into regular schools. By now we had a daughter Nicole too.
Eventually we settled back in our native Florida. We’d missed family and friends and our parents were getting older. Through our daughter who was majoring in International Studies, we discovered the primitive beauty Cost Rica. We began the adventure of building a house in a primitive jungle area of the country without roads or electricity. I took a leave of absence from my teaching job to oversee the construction with my daughter who was fluent in Spanish. Although we loved the primitive beauty of the country, the wonderful people and democratic system, the stress of the primitive conditions and my separation from Ray eventually caused a final split in my marriage.
Learning to live alone and independently in both Costa Rica and Florida was a challenge but exciting and ultimately fulfilling. Life and Deaf fills in the gaps of our lives in a stirring tale of adventure, challenge, love and pain.