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October 29, 2018

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Dyslexia became my superpower

September 21, 2018


So, my label is dyslexia although they’ve said I have dyspraxic symptoms too.  When I was a child I absolutely hated with a passion being dyslexic.  I hated the fact there was something ‘wrong with me.’  I needed ‘extra care’ and was always told I very lazy and had no concentration span.


I’d make ‘mistakes’ all the time, I was the one who got 0/20 in my spelling tests, 0/20 in maths tests. That of course depended on me going school, I often had a stomach ache on those days because I couldn’t cope with the embarrassment of being the labelled the worst in the class.

I always got the worst mark guaranteed, and my mark being called out in front of everyone or even worse, swapping with a friend to mark and them being like, “seriously Charlotte, you’re so thick,” was simply my worst nightmare.  


I didn’t know why I couldn’t spell things or add up, in my head I spelt things very logically, much more logically than the dictionary, because I spelt them as they sounded.  Numbers as well, my absolute nemesis, I still don’t get numbers.  Although, to be honest, no one has put me on the spot in my 34 years of life and asked me to do my 7 times tables or have I required algebra to get a job.  


When I did badly at something, I was forced to do more of the work I hated, under more pressure, and, in an even less kind way than when it started in.  

My teachers sheer frustration with me made me panic even more.  So, I was destined to make more and more mistakes.  I failed my GCSE's, and I wasn’t allowed to stay on in 6th form, I have no idea why.


I begged the teachers to let me stay at school, I went around each of them and promised I’d do better and behave, but to be fair, they were all glad to see the back of me.  I was very disruptive and my behaviour was pretty shocking.  I look back now and I know it was a way of me coping with being different, being naughty was a way I could detract from being dyslexic and blame my bad grades on being a naughty person and not from not knowing what they were ever on about.


I was scared of going into to the world where I would have to do some adulating, I was encouraged to go and get a job or do something arty.  Thank goodness, they did, because I went and studied are and design.  There, I found this new thing that other people did, it was called encouragement and seeing beyond my disability.    


Encouragement made me feel fantastic, it made me feel that I was worthy!!  I spent all day every day doing different kinds of art and design, it was my dream and I met people that were just like me.  I finally found people that I could get along with easily. I finally began to find out who I was. Ok, so, the first year was a bit rocky and I passed with a pass, the second year I passed with merit and my third year I passed with distinction.  I was finally good at something.


It’s absolutely unbelievable that I read things now, that children in 2018 are still receiving the same treatment as I did all those years ago.  When is the education system going to wake up?


So, if you are dyslexic, this message is for you.  You are enough, you always have been and you always will be.  You are not stupid, it’s actually the other way around, your true abilities are way more than what people can manage.  


Your ability to see outside the box is far beyon