kate bohdanowicz writer

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From cancer to a career change

Having blogged 10 months ago, it’s time for an update but as we know it all got a bit cancerish and I don’t do cancer any more. But then what can follow something as serious as life and death? Cancer buggered up many things including my enthusiasm for blogging. But my recent scan was clear and as we're four years down the line, it’s time to park it and discuss something else.

This week I’ll receive my certificate to say I’m a qualified lipspeaker. Lipspeaking is a form of communication for deaf and hard of hearing people. You make yourself more lipreadable and support some words with fingerspelling. It sounds easy enough but the course was 14 months long so as you can imagine, it takes a bit of practice. 

I decided to do it because my other half, Tim Reedy (pen behind the cartoons on this site) is deaf and he uses lipspeakers. We had them come in for my horrible hospital appointments. I wish I could remember more about them but I was always focused on the doctor telling me which disgusting procedure I was due to have, and I’ve blocked a lot of it out. 

I’m not planning to give up my writing and editing. I hope to work as a lipspeaker maybe one day a week. I’ve also started learning sign language (very early stages – names, numbers and whether I arrived via bus, train or helicopter) but that’s more to enhance the lipspeaking. I don’t intend to work my way up to become a sign language interpreter.

So, with a career change on the horizon, the website needs an overhaul. I don’t do any teaching, I’m no closer to being a published author (although admittedly, I’ve not pushed that) so those pages need to go and lipspeaking needs to be added on. Watch this space.

Oh, and if you or anyone you know needs a lipspeaker or would like me to explain what it is and give you a demonstration, email me on lipspeaker@katebod.co.uk. My lips are for hire.

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