For Dyslexia awareness week I really wanted to share some stories of the achievements and wonderfulness of my fellow Dyslexics and those with Dyscalculia.
So if you, or your child, partner or friend has recently received a diagnosis take heart! they have just joined an exclusive tribe of wonderfulness. We are amazing people! and I hope that we can encourage people who have either condition. Differently-abled can be a fantastic thing!
As you know I am a Dyslexic blogger and author, speaker and writing mentor – which is why all my books are formatted to be accessible to those with Dyslexia and literacy issues with a larger than average more regular shaped font, wider spacing between lines, shorter paragraphs, and bold titles to show where new stories start.
Some of the notable people I have for you are Spike Lee, Noel Gallagher, Lynda La Plante, Carol Grieder, Anita Roddick, Andy Warhol, if you don’t know who they are look them up!
But this article is all about Ashley and her son Adam, told by Ashley their story starts in the 1970’s…
“When my son first started school nearly fifty years ago he struggled to learn to read. Each year he got further behind his peers. I can’t remember when I first heard the term Dyslexia but by the time my son reached age eight or nine it was clear to me that he definitely had a problem with reading and I decided to find out more.
The British Dyslexia Association sent me some leaflets that convinced that he had Dyslexia. But when I spoke to the head teacher at his school he was completely dismissive saying that ‘I don’t have disabled children in my school’. His father was also dismissive thinking that our son just needed to work harder.
By ten he struggled to read a book even though he had intellectual curiosity and had problems with his short-term memory. His father insisted that he went to the grammar school where he had to learn French and German, unfortunately this led to his becoming clinically depressed as it was impossible for him to learn either.
Finally, at age twelve with his reading age at around eight, his father was persuaded to let him be tested, and it was clear that he had Dyslexia. His father who had also always had issues with spelling – despite being a successful company director – then also decided to be tested, and found that he also had Dyslexia!
There wasn’t really any help and support available in mainstream education, but my friend who was a primary teacher helped him with some extra tutoring. I was delighted when my son went on to study building and fulfilled his dream to become a stone mason, it’s an unusual, technical, and demanding job, that he adores! he has had the honour of working on some of the most famous churches and cathedrals in the UK.
I went on a trip to a Cathedral with my friends, and looking up and admiring the stone work at a particular point I was able to say “Adam carved that piece!” seeing things that my son has created that will last for hundreds of years makes me a very proud Mum indeed”.
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