“It is my great strength that gets me where I want to go but it is my flaws, my weaknesses, that made me who I am.”
Sometimes I am so determined in my need to succeed that I forget just how much I have accomplished and just how far I have come. I don’t like to dwell on things I can’t change or things that I have no control over. Instead just keeping moving forward towards the goals I set for myself. Even as a child I never liked to compete against others, it made me feel sick inside. Instead I always just competed against myself. And I think it’s that kind of drive that gets people farther in the end.
I have dyslexia; in fact I have all three forms. Bet most of you didn’t even know there were three. The most common one is the reading one, that’s the one most people are familiar with it’s also the one most kids have. (Me, not so much with that anymore.) Another one is the writing one. (This is the one I have the worst.) When I write sometimes I move letters or words around out of order. And no matter how many times I read it back half the time it will still look correct to me because my brain is auto correcting it for me.
This is made even worse if I’m trying to write while the tv is on or someone is trying to talk to me. I will literally start transcribing the audio into the sentences inter-spaced with what I was trying to write. Sometimes words just end up there that are out of the blue and completely unrelated to anything I was thinking. Because I know this happens I work around it. I listen to music that won’t distract me and try to write mostly when everyone is asleep. Which means about 90% of my writing is done between 11pm-4am, like this for example I’m writing at 3am.
The third form is the least common. Sometimes when I’m speaking I mix the words up in the sentence but to me it sounds correct. This usually gets worse if I’m extremely upset. It also mostly happens with numbers (ya working retail was real fun with this one). But did I ever let this get in my way? No, I was in 25 musicals, choir and singing competitions growing up. Instead of running away from something I shouldn’t have been able to do I ran head long into it and practiced until I was extremely good at it. But there are still some things i just can’t like foreign language. I tried as hard as hard as I could and did pretty while grade wise but only remember a few odd words and phrases in Spanish and Italian.
I also have poor muscle memory in my hands which means things like typing with all my fingers, playing piano or using chop sticks are nearly impossible for me. But instead of focusing on what I can’t do, I just adapt around it. Anyone who chats with me in one of the weekly tweet chats or on instant messenger knows I type lighting fast but what I bet you didn’t know was that I only use 2 fingers to type. It’s all about focusing on what you need to do instead of focusing on what prevents you from doing it. Instead of beating myself up for what I could not do I just put everything into what I could do.
Dyslexia isn’t something that just goes away or something you just grow out of. It’s something you have to deal with everyday, something that’s just of part of what makes you, you. The point is not to let it run you life. Sure nearly every time I write “me” it comes out “my” instead or vice versa. And I will forever type “chnage” instead of “change” even though I know how it’s spelled. And I can read a sentence a dozen times and still not see the mistakes because my brain corrects it for me. I used to feel embarrassed about this but you know what, Dyslexia is a disability and those are nothing to be ashamed of. Nor should anyone be made to feel dumb because of them. Being learning disabled doesn’t make you dumb, slow or lazy. But you know what is dumb; hate. Hating someone because they are not like you is dumb.
In the last decade we have come a long way towards ending hate. Every time some new group, gains equality and vanquishes, prejudices and stereotypes it makes me want to cry with joy and hug humankind for taking a step in the right direction. But we still have a long way to go yet. So if you and me ban together and make a stand for what is right then others will follow. And someday whether it’s a long time from now or next Tuesday, there will be enough voices to silence the hate.
Learning disabled does not equal dumb â— Spread the Word â— End the Hate