One little shell

One little shell

One little shell

Waiting in the foyer at Amelia’s deaf school for her to finish kinder is a warm and frequently special place to be.

Sitting there, in the middle of the hectic end-of-day rush to get home, I watch the kids signing to each other with awe and respect and I love them.

The other day, a young girl, maybe six or seven years old, nudged my arm to show me a little shell she was holding in her hand. In Auslan, I asked her, “What’s that?”

We mouthed the word “shell” to each other, but she was desperate to show me the sign and I so wanted her to teach me.

But she needed two hands.

After a few seconds fumbling with the shell I extended my hand so she could rest it there.

Her hands now free, she lifted one to the other and rotated her right hand out from the left, like the drawing together of layers into a whole.

Ah, shell. I placed it in my lap and repeated the sign back to her.

No not quite, she wasn’t happy with my signing form that time. Maybe a finger or two askew, or a motion not delivered deftly enough.

I tried again and she nodded with approval. Got it.

Then, quick as flash, she reclaimed her shell and skipped away.

And I couldn’t stop smiling.


2 thoughts on “One little shell

  1. Mel, I have just discovered this wonderful page, what talent you have!
    It’s amazing how you are writing your thoughts about precious Amelia and some of it myself and family can really relate to.
    My mum went through the exact same thing 30 years ago with my sister and some doctors trying to put their 5 cents in when they really had no idea.

    I know life’s not fair but I personally think we are better people for it and who ever is up there only gives it to the tough ones hey? (lifes tough get a helmet) haha.
    Although I wouldn’t change anything about having my sweet sister Carly in my life, I’d do anything for her to live a normal life and for my parents to hear her say ‘i love u’ and not have to worry about the future, that kind of doesn’t make sense does it, but you get the drift…..

    Anyway i could go on and on but just want to say you inspire me 🙂


    • Jodi you are too kind! I love your comment because it reminded me that it doesn’t matter what the challenge is, there’s a common set of experiences and feelings that bind us to each other. I would say YOU are an inspiration for the deep love you have for your dear sister and your family but that you can be honest about Carly’s situation and the hopes that are desperately hard to shed. I agree about the toughness – if you started out soft you won’t stay that way and that is very lucky indeed. Sending you lots of love beautiful woman. Please come back and share here (or anywhere) because your voice added to mine makes us twice as strong. Mel xx

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