A Journey of My Life

By Ivy Chow  |   From : Boston/Myanmar  |   School : Horace Mann School for the Deaf

To find a bright future in the whole world of yourself where you have your own story to influence others feels inspired.


Through growing up, I had my own struggle of being who I am. I have had a cochlear implant and a hearing aid since I was about 3½ -4 years old. I was required to attend speech lessons for almost 12-14 years by my parents’ demand. I was so afraid and did not know what I wanted to do with my life and outside the community would judge and betray me because I am deaf and what I have it on my ear. 


I had a tough time and was struggling with my own identities. I wasn’t sure who I was. The community of South End and Horace Mann School for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (HMS) community had looked down on me like I am worthless and look dumb. Back in the day, I was over obese and being deaf. They bullied me with verbal abuse of all the negative words, based on my appearance and what I had. I remember I mentioned to my mom that I wanted to hide myself and stay home everyday, never wanting to go out to after school activities again. However, my mom kept fighting me and pursuing the goals for me to do better as I am capable of anything. Second, I am fearful of coming out as LGBTQ to the community, especially my family. However, I am grateful my friends and HMS family supported me at the time when I wasn’t sure who I was. 


Nearly graduating high school, I found my future and what I want to be. Through high school, I enjoyed my own time and engaged in various activities where I was in a happy place while still struggling inside of me. I went to mainstream school at Brighton High where I took some classes and was involved in their girls’ basketball team while I was on the team at HMS as well. I had a job and volunteered at Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center (BCNC) with my mom to support the children’s family who have special needs. I went to the West End House of Boys and Girls club everyday after school to meet new people and find my entertainment. While I was doing these activities, I searched up and prepared for college. As a result, I got accepted into Gallaudet University in Washington DC where I went.


A new chapter of college experience, I met and learned new people with various backgrounds where they came from different experiences while I tried to find a career job that would make me happy. Through the mid-years, I realized that there are so many things going on: elitism, favoritism, tokenism, drama around me, and struggle on my own without anyone’s help but I kept continuing my positive thoughts in my head and stayed strong.


I was afraid people would judge me and discriminate against me for who I am today.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.