I’m of the generation where teachers didn’t really know how to teach someone with dyslexia. One parents evening, during my third year of Primary School, my teacher said to my parents “let’s face it, she’s not going to make it all the way to university”. The big problem with the education system back then was that there was no compassion, no understanding and no humanity.
Lucky for me, I had my parents behind me. They helped me in every way they could to advance my understanding of the English language but in Year Six I took a test and I still showed slight problems with dyslexia. My parents had a decision to make…
Label me as Dyslexic or not?
I never thought I was stupid. If I had someone, who didn’t have a problem reading and writing, laughed as my inability to spell the word because (which I still spell in my head as Big Elephants Can’t Always Use Small Exits) I’d think, “I’m not stupid – you’re the one who’s stupid.” I just had self-belief. Still not giving up on me my parents carried on providing me with extra English lessons all the way up to year nine. Every exam was torture and I had to study extra hard to achieve average grades. Nevertheless I proudly walked into Sixth Form with 10 GCSE’s under my belt; including B in Maths and C in English. Sixth Form was where I found my creativity and I excelled in Graphics, Art and Leisure and Tourism. I was on a roll and soon found myself achieving what my primary school teacher never thought was possible; university.
I thrived at university. Events Management suited me to a T. I began to think innovatively and business ideas started to pop into my head. The amount of business proposals I have written is certainly into double digits. Today I work, ironically, in communications so what I’m saying and what I truly believe is
Dyslexia is not a measurement of intelligence
Nor should it define who you are. Having dyslexia can make you creative. If you want to construct a sentence and can’t find the word you are searching for, you have to think of a way to write around it. This requires being creative and so your “creativity muscle” gets bigger.
It’s crazy to think about the struggle I’ve had get through every exam the school system has thrown at me. Luckily those days are behind me but I’m always going to have obstacles. I’m never going to write up the perfect press release, blog post or fully grasp spelling and grammar so it rolls off my tongue. However, my thirst to learn and innovate has got me to where I am today; in a role I absolutely love in a company that encourages creativity.
I wanted to share this with you because I believe it was my response to education, along with my parent’s belief, which got me where I am. I have, what I think, is the best job in the world plus I’m not afraid to blog or try new things.
Do you have anything that could have held you back? How did you deal with it?
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