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Waking up with the alarm blaring was not how she would picture starting her day today, which was probably why Taealha kept hitting the snooze button on her phone, sliding the same function every single time it would ring. An alarm was meant to function to wake them up but that's not what it's doing to Taealha. The human was sleeping peacefully on her bed, with her phone on the bedside table still blaring her favorite song. So noisy, she thought at first. Eventually, the human covered her entire face using a pillow to muffle the ringing. It wasn't until it rang again, but this time it was not the alarm tone she set. Pushing the pillow off her head, she lifted her head up slightly and narrowed her eyes at the sight of her ringing phone. She wasn't sure which one caught her attention more, the caller ID or the time displayed on her phone. But it was more than enough to get her up and going, that's for sure.
The human quickly jumped out of her bed and saw there were like 13 messages from her friend; a friend that promised to hook her up with sign language teaching lessons. The lesson she was meant to facilitate and help today. Shit. She was meant to be at the teaching center at 10 but now it was already almost half past 9 in 5 minutes. Everyone who knows her, they know Taealha takes everything in precision. Including how long she was going to shower. That's about to be an issue for today because whatever it was, she needed to be there at the center before 10. Bless Nita for texting her and calling her when she realized she hadn't arrived at the teaching center 30 minutes early, which was a habit Taealha had. While trudging through her closet, Taealha literally pulled out whatever she had her eyes on first before dashing into the bathroom.
By the time the clock reached 9 45, she was halfway putting on her lip gloss and exited her apartment. Her keys fell on the floor twice because she was in a hurry to lock the door but she managed to do it after the third try. Bonus, she did it without breaking the key. The only saving grace for her is that the teaching center is not that far from her place, if she cycled fast enough, she will get there in 10. Taking a quick look at what she was wearing, Taealha raised her eyebrows and mumbled a not bad before hopping into the bicycle. Surprisingly, she managed to pull off the spaghetti strapped top with a cardigan covering her, and jeans. Fast and rushed cycling required pants. Her hair was basically pinned up in a ponytail, the color was slowly dimming but the red was still there. Taealha had volunteered to assist her friend, Nita, to teach some people sign language since she's well-versed in it. How could she forget making such a promise?
After a while, the bicycle finally came to a screeching stop to which Taealha parked it nearby and literally rushed through the entrance door, actually bumping into someone and toppling over them. "I'm so sorry" she murmured and tried to get up, well, this is good, first day of helping and she's already bumped into a potential learner. She held out her hand for the female to take, they definitely hit their heads hard because she could feel herself getting dizzy. "Do I wanna know why early miss sunshine who's never late is almost late today?" Nita came from behind and Taealha grumbled before getting her fingers to work, "I did OT yesterday..." Still, she tried to see if the person she bumped into was alright.
If there was something defining about Dakota, it was that she loved learning new things, it would be strange for her if she wasn’t learning something new and she was always finding online courses to complete and keep herself busy. Her free time was very rarely spent at home, between her magic lessons, lesson planning for work and her volunteering work, she was a very busy person but she enjoyed her life being like that. Perhaps it was crazy to keep adding to that list of things she was doing but recently she had gone through at least 100 hours worth of ASL tutorials and learning material. As a teacher, she liked to be able to do her very best work and so when she had learned one of her students for next year was hard of hearing she had decided she would go the extra mile to ensure she had the best learning experience.
That was what had brought her here today, because after spending hours upon hours of her time leaning online she finally felt confident enough in her own ability to start putting what she learned into practice and what better way to do that than to interact with those who used sign language on a daily basis. She hoped whoever she got paired with would be patient with her and help her to learn more, at the very least they could help her to practice conversation and let her know if there was anything she was doing wrong. She had arrived in the center early and signed in, she already paid her fee upfront. She was handed a clipboard with a form to fill out which she took with her over to the chairs and began filling it out.
She was busy writing away when the pen slipped from her grasp and rolled across the floor, clumsy her, she cursed in her head as she got to her feet and chased it down only to not realize there was someone directly in her path and collide straight into them. She was knocked back a little, naturally her hand went to her temple where it hurt because the two of them had collided pretty hard “Ow” he spoke as she corrected her, thankfully avoided falling on her ass and she looked up to see two people there. She was new so she didn’t recognize either of them but she assumed from the fact they immediately picked up conversation in sign language that they were trainers rather than learners. She bit her lip before signing slowly “Sorry, I wasn’t paying attention” despite her slow pace, she was pretty sure she got it right and smiled proudly at her own memory.
She didn't expect to be late today because Taealha didn't have tardiness in her dictionary, the human had always been punctual so seeing her oversleeping when she's got like 4 different alarms on the same hour to ensure her sleeping schedule is not interrupted by any other interferences. Well, all the OT work was bound to get to her soon especially with how long she spent her time in the laboratory. But since she's promised her friend that she would be volunteering for today's class, Taealha couldn't disappoint her by burying her head under the pillow no more, the guilt would eat her alive. A promise is a promise, Taealha, she reminded herself. No matter how many times she grunted in complaint, the redhead still dragged herself out of the bed so she could get to the class today. Nita is relying on her because there's no many facilitators around, if she counted herself it would be 3 altogether.
But when she bumped into a stranger, Taealha felt like the world crumbled underneath her from embarrassment, well… maybe quaked a bit. The pain sensation was something else she's never felt, especially because it was her head being the poor victim for today. As she complained in pain, she also took a look at the person she had bumped against, "Don't worry about it" she signed and looked at Nita to translate for her because she didn't recognize her face which meant she was a participant, a student and not a trainer like them. It helps that Taealha knew who the trainers were since they were friends from college together. "She said not to worry about it since it's also her fault" Nita translated with a cheeky grin, which made the human roll her eyes and shook her head as she went ahead to take a test pad and a marker.
She flipped the book and wrote something on it, "I'm truly sorry for bumping into you. Are you okay? We hit our heads quite hard… you're not suffering from any minor concussion right?" she pressed her lips together in worry and showed her the message. Hey not everyone can text each other, and Taealha may have forgotten her notebook because she was in a hurry. Thankfully there were test pads and markers for the trainers and participants alike to use to feel like they're delving into the lesson better. "I'm Taealha" she beamed and held out her hand with a smile. "Are you here to learn ASL?"
Dakota had a basic understanding of sign language, when others signed, as long as they were slow enough and accompanied the movements with mouthing of the words she could understand what they were saying. That was mostly from watching a lot of online tutorials and running through course content, but actually signing herself was harder because she didn’t have anyone to practice with so she didn’t know if she was doing the movements right or if they could be confused for other words. Dakota laughed softly at the translation the other trainer gave and grinned “I guess we are both clumsy” she responded out loud, feeling more at ease now that she was here and got an idea of what the environment was like.
She followed the young looking girl before reading her message asking if she was okay, the brunette reached up to rub the spot on her head where the two of them collided and then she took one of the pads for herself so she could write a response. After all, the girl had needed a translation so she assumed that she must be deaf or otherwise impaired “I work with kids, a bump on the head is much less likely to give me a migraine” she wrote and then smiled softly. She seemed bright and cheery and naturally made Dakota feel at ease, when she introduced herself, Dakota took her hand and then shook it gently before taking a breath and signing her own introduction, this one she had practiced many times “My name is Dakota” she nodded with a sheepish smile and nodded ‘yes’ to her question about what she was here for.
She looked down at the pad and started writing again “I can understand most sentences as long as you are slow” she added and showed her it “I am not confident with signing myself, I mix up the words as I’m trying to speak them” it was easier to recognize several movements and piece together what someone was trying to tell you than it was to think of the movement you needed to do in order to say what you wanted to say “Hopefully you can help me to learn more” she showed her and nodded, Taealha seemed patient and kind so she was glad to be working with her.
Taealha had thought that it was probably hard for her to do sign language in front of someone who was there to learn it better, in the first place hence why she quickly opted to take a test pad and a marker pen, to enable herself to communicate with the lady without any barrier. However, she was eternally grateful to Nita who still looked at her funny with that mischievous look on her face, because she was there to translate to the poor lady she just bumped into earlier. “I guess you can say that” she giggled and rubbed the spot from earlier, thankfully it wouldn’t leave her a bruise. Thank god, she wouldn’t be able to do anything if her head is hurting. “Good, I wouldn’t like to have a record on me… the last thing I want is for my supervisor to find out that I have caused a minor concussion to another random poor soul. Even if I highlighted accidentally.”
Not everyone is as forgiving. Her supervisor just likes her better, fortunately. When she signed her name, Taealha gave her a big thumbs up and clapped enthusiastically, it may be basic but self introduction takes a lot of confidence, especially for those who have only done it a few times. It was still something to be applauded for. “That’s a nice name,” she wrote. “That’s the one bad thing about me, actually… I don’t do… slow. This is probably the slowest I’ve been” she giggled and signed something towards Nita and gave her a pleading look, obviously asking the other female to translate it for her. “She said she can be quite hyperactive at times and is telling me… to tell you to never shy away from telling her that she’s being fast” Taealha beamed proudly when the translation went through. “Some movements can look familiar and can be used for more than a single message” she wrote down, “so don’t worry. You’ll get there soon enough.”
Even as someone who was mute, she had to start from somewhere and Taealha took her time trying to learn sign language. Definitely longer than she even took English classes as a young child. NIta clasped her hands and it was then that she knew class was about to commence so Taealha grabbed Dakota’s wrist, gently beckoning for her to follow. She took a seat at the middle row of the first one, patting the seat next to her for the diviner. “How long have you been a teacher?” she had already written it down but wrote it in words separately as she showed her the sign form to help her understand better.
She laughed softly, the girl seemed very sweet and kind which she liked a lot, it was rare to find someone so understanding after you had just pretty much headbutted them and while it was both their fault, neither seemed to want to put blame on the other. “Don’t worry about it, I see 9 year olds bump heads and get into arguments only to be best friends again by the end of the day” she snickered slightly, she had seen a lot in her years as a teacher so nothing really fazed her much. “Thank you” she signed in response when she said that her name was nice, Kota had always liked her name that her parents chose for her, it suited her and was unique enough without being material that would get her bullied at school when she was younger.
She laughed when the other girl said sheepishly that she wasn’t very good at being slow, she looked between the two girls and noted that they seemed like they were good friends, she was watching Taealha’s movements carefully to try and pick up on what she was saying “I will try to keep up” he signed and then smiled softly, she did have some practice under her belt but she was sure she needed more. She smiled and nodded when she said she had a hyperactive nature and to ask her to slow down. She paused for a moment wondering how to say the words before making a guess at the words “Slow down” while looking at the other female to confirm if she got it right or not.
Before long the class was beginning and she looked over in surprise when Taealha grabbed her hand but laughed as she allowed her to lead her over to their seat, she made herself comfortable in the chair and took out her notepad from her bag so that she could make notes on anything which came to mind. She glanced over at the note which Taealha passed to her and then wrote on her own notepad to response to her “Around 10 years” she responded, giving a proud smile, she had been teaching for a long time now and it seemed like forever ago that she was in college “I’ve taught many different grades but right now I’m teaching 3rd grade” she quite enjoyed working with the younger kids and getting to help nurture them to become the people they are going to grow into one day.