Everything Happens for a Reason, by Tara Chevrestt

Writing a memoir was therapeutic. When I first started penning it on the urges of many friends, family members, and coworkers, I had no intention of seeing it published. I just started to poor my past onto the page. And sometimes I cried. Sometimes I got angry and had to walk away, but in the end, seeing it all on the page, getting it all out of my system, felt really good.

I also realized something as I wrote: my past makes me who I am today. I wouldn't be writing if I hadn't lost myself in books. I wouldn't have lost myself in books if I'd had a ton of friends in school. Growing up, I always found fictional people were nicer to me than real people.

If I'd been able to fly jets like I wanted to, I would never have worked on them, and in turn, so many people would be hauling their lunch boxes to their shops day after day, still believing that deaf and hearing impaired means stupid; that a deaf person, especially a woman, can't possibly do their job.

So life works out the way it does for a reason. Writing my memoir helped me realize this. Your mother can say it to you five times a week, but for me, it really struck home as I penned this book.

You're stupid. You're retarded. You shouldn't have this job. These words lit a fire of determination in one deaf woman who set out to prove to the aviation world…and the world in general that deaf isn't dumb.

by Tara Chevrestt

Available from Breathless Press

Deaf Isn't Dumb is a motivational story of a young woman, Tara, who faces the challenges of growing up "hearing impaired" in a hearing world. Follow her as she recounts everything from childhood bullies to work related restrictions, and funny misunderstandings from mispronounced words to fear of Federal Air Marshals. In this tale, straight from the heart, learn that simply because one is deaf—contrary to popular misconception—it doesn't mean they are dumb.


"Chevrestt!" The balding, middle-aged instructor finally bellowed my last name along with two other girls'. It was time. With sweaty palms, a racing heartbeat, and shaky legs, I left the prefab building and followed the instructor into the parking lot. He pointed me in the direction of a silver Ford. I climbed into the driver's seat and watched the instructor through my windshield as I went over my checklist and prepared myself to drive.

First, buckle your seatbelt. I took a deep breath and accomplished that. I felt a satisfying click as the seatbelt locked into place.

Second, adjust your seat. I had to pull the seat up a bit by grabbing the handle underneath and pulling myself forward.

Third, adjust your mirrors. I adjusted my rearview mirror first. Then I glanced at the side mirrors. They would do.

Fourth, start your car. I turned the key in the ignition. I waited. A bead of sweat tickled down my cheek as it made a path from my forehead. I impatiently swiped it away and turned the key in the ignition again. Nothing. I was beginning to get upset. I finally get a chance to drive and of course, I get the car that won't start! Had my vocabulary contained more four-letter words at this age in my life, I probably would have used them—all of them.

I was turning the key in the ignition again when a movement by my driver's door caught my eye. I looked in that direction to see the instructor waving his arms and yelling, "What are you doing?"

I cleared my throat and stared out at him, bewildered. "I'm trying to start the car!" Had the seats been leather, my legs would have been stuck to them by then.

Then the instructor said the most surprising thing. "The car is on already!"

My mouth fell open, and I looked wildly around the interior of the car as though it would yield an answer to this mystery. I did not hear a thing, of course, but most shocking of all is I didn't feel a thing. My father's old Nissan vibrated. You knew that truck was on and running when the hairs on your head began to dance and shake and your limbs unconsciously began to do the hokey pokey. No big mystery with that Nissan truck. This late model car was going to be a problem.

Red-faced, I quit turning the key in the ignition and faced forward, awaiting further instructions.

Tara Chevrestt
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  1. Oh yes! I remember that all too well. This is a good excerpt from the book. Hope other will take the time to learn from it. Job well done Tara.


  2. It's about time more people realised that fact. I am so looking forward to reading this story.

    felinewyvern at googlemail dot com

  3. Thank you, Ilona and Janet.