Imaginative play becomes reality

Phoebe Tay
When I was young my favourite games were pretending to be a teacher or writer. I would pretend to teach music and writing. After high school I decided to be a teacher for Deaf people. I studied at university for four years. I worked very hard to become a teacher. I also like to write. I write short stories and am now happy to be writing for DiVine. I believe we can achieve many things. It requires hard work and determination. And it requires courage.
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Phoebe Tay on 06/02/2012
A classroom of children with a blackboard.

I really wanted to be a teacher.

As a child I used to engage in imaginative play at home after school. I especially loved to role-play people in various jobs such as chef, writer, secretary, superwoman, ninja turtles and teacher.

The two jobs I most enjoyed incorporating into my play were teacher and author. I often pretended I was teaching an imaginary class of my own in my mum's music studio. I conducted music classes by playing simple songs on the piano. I also taught reading, writing and mathematics.

I had a penpal from America and sent handwritten letters to her in the mail. My mum bought me a blank diary that had a lock and key. I looked forward to writing entries about my day in it from time to time. I frequently wrote short stories in my childhood days and compiled them into a book. I would re-read some of my diary notes and stories. I would imagine becoming an author like Enid Blyton and Roald Dahl, whose books I loved reading.

Supportive people

In my final year of high school I had to decide what I wanted to major in at university. I was confused about what I wanted to do. But I knew I wanted to study something related to children and teaching. However, a few people that I talked to around me felt that such a highly interactive job was not suitable for me. This is because I am Deaf and much of the job required hearing.

As a result, I kept changing my mind over what course I should pursue. But a talk with my school chaplain on career guidance changed everything. She told me I could become a teacher of the Deaf. From that point onwards I felt that was what I really wanted to do. So I began to look into pursuing a degree in Deaf education. My parents and a few close friends encouraged me along the way.

Determination and hard work

I studied for four years at university as an international student in Brisbane. I studied a Bachelor of Special Education majoring in Hearing Impairment. I faced some challenges adjusting to a whole new culture and education system. But I was determined to obtain my teaching degree. It was with much hard work and determination that I got through my university studies and am now working as a teacher of the Deaf.

In some of my spare time, I channel my energy into writing articles for my blog and working on short story projects. Getting a job as a columnist with DiVine in 2012 is a step forward to realising my childhood dreams of becoming a writer. I am rapt for the opportunity to be able to use my writing skills to contribute to the disability community in a positive way.

Dreams can come true

To accomplish great things, we must dream as well as act (Anatole France). I like this quote because I believe that it is up to us to turn our dreams into reality regardless of what people around us say.

I believe that some degree of competency plus determination and hardwork can help us achieve our dreams. Sometimes it requires risk-taking and preparedness to accept rejection. I vividly recall a conversation with a friend who said change takes courage. It is up to you to step out of your comfort zone and achieve what you have dreamed as a child.

I know I have done it. How about you?

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