It was my father who instilled the 'never say no' attitude I carry around with me today, and who instilled in me a sense of wonder, always taking us on adventures in the car, never telling us the destination.
When I learned to sign and speak at the same time, the whole world opened up to me. That's the beauty of encouraging kids who are deaf to use whatever it takes to communicate.
My parents were the ones who gave me the independence, who gave me the spark to do anything that you set your mind to, as all parents should do for their kids.
The only thing I can't do is hear. I can drive, I have a life with four kids, I work on TV, I do movies, so the deafness question, is it that they want to know because, what? Not sure.
There are many deaf people who couldn't imagine living in a marriage without someone who doesn't speak their language. For me, I believe that hearing or deaf is fine as long as both parties are willing to communicate in each other's language. But if there's no communication, then the marriage, I believe, will be difficult if not doomed.
I'm the only one in my family who is deaf, and there are still conversations that go around me that I miss out on. And I ask what's going on, and I have to ask to be included. But I'm not going to be sad about it. I don't live in sad isolation. It's just a situation I'm used to.
You can do anything if you set your mind to it. Look out for kids, help them dream and be inspired. We teach calculus in schools, but I believe the most important formula is courage plus dreams equals success.