What mental image comes to your mind about going on a journey?. Is it a car journey with padkos and long hours in a car and changing scenery, and arriving at a holiday destination.
This is not the one I have in mind here. The book ‘North Face of God’ captures the image of the journey for me in this context better. This research project is a journey that I am on at the moment and is more akin to climbing a mountain.
There is a destination for this researcher to reach: the summit. And I like this image as the way that people climb is often quite different to the route taken by others, but the goal is the same. The scary part is realising that this is a huge task and that is this is most likely beyond my experience and stamina. This is a mental journey beyond my limits, but I know that I am not alone, and if I were then I fail most probably fail, stop, or fall. To complete this journey upwards and onwards to the summit, I need the company of a climbing team: those who have done it before, and those who know me well. This is also a spiritual journey, of living the faith with others and moving forwards, being wise, prayerful, diligent and persistent and well-equipped and protected against the cold and wet and well-nourished to complete the journey. The lack of water and food to sustain me and the team will cause the team to collapse.
So, if you are reading this, this is an invitation for you to join me on this journey, as a fellow researcher, expert, prayer-partner, pilgrim, guide, fellow-burden carrier and friend. Did you notice how the journey by Frodo and Harry Potter was not a solo journey but a team effort built and sustained by the loyalty, and friendship and faith in their mission and themselves and they were all changed for the better. We have a mission here. It is not my mission that you are supporting but something much bigger. And we must make haste.
I am a disciple of research, and I was born for such a time and for this project. And I am deaf, and this is one of my strengths here. Being deaf is no longer a weakness. But it is an asset in this project. And I will do whatever it takes to be true to myself and to doing this research on bilingualism as it is close to my heart. But I also need a strong, passionate team to take up this challenge.
So tell me what is close to your heart in deaf studies?
Let’s get started, let’s talk, let’s plan, let’s do it.