People say I’m so lucky to be where I am now, that I fought through so much trouble with my dyslexia and where that little girl used to stand there that couldn’t read and couldn’t write, and people seemed so shocked and so surprised to hear that I am at University and that I have achieved academically. Because they just remember that little girl that they all thought didn’t have a chance in hell of doing anything good in her life. I know that I am one of the lucky ones, and I know that there are so many other dyslexics out there that maybe did have help or maybe didn’t have help and haven’t succeeded.
When I found out I was dyslexic after the rubbish that I had gone through in schools and people not believing in me, to then be told I was dyslexic I remember my mum being so happy and telling me that my life was going to get better. I was in mainstream school before I got told I was dyslexic. I got put into a unit for dyslexia where there were ten other people sitting in that room, all with dyslexia. There were nine boys and one other girl. I remember sitting in that room thinking why am I surrounded by these idiots? What have I done to deserve this? Flipping great! I was told things would get better but I was now surrounded by nutters.
Those idiots or nutters became my brothers and sister, they were my family, they understood where I was coming from. They had their own stories to tell as well as mine. We made such a strong bond that no one could break. We were different but we didn’t care, the world could piss off in our eyes because we had had enough. Not all of them have come so far as where I am now, only two of the other boys are at University. It’s a shame really because all that hard work and those days of full English lessons and the fights with the other school children in the mainstream school, and all the difficult times we went through, and the hard work we put in just didn’t pay off for some of them.
I remember one of my brothers had decided he was going into the army because lets face it, he thought that’s all he was worth. His brother was in the army and went to Iraq when the War began. He ran away from the army and went nuts from what he had seen. My brother could see at first hand what the army could do to you, the bad things they don’t shout about, and he still singed up. I remember him saying to me ‘Look Larissa, what else is there for me to do? Nowhere else will take me but the army will, and they will train me’. I remember asking him how long he wants to be in the army for, the response was ‘I will be there all my life until I get killed because there’s nothing else for me’. It upsets me to think and to know that after all that hard work that myself and my other brothers did that someone can still think so little of themselves , or think that they are no good for anything else.
There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about those guys. Everything that I achieve academically or even normal things in my life, I’m not just doing for myself to make me a better person, I’m doing it for all those dyslexic people and my brothers and sister that haven’t had the chance to achieve what I have done. So if I pass my first year of Uni, it’s not just ‘congratulations Larissa, not in my eyes. I am doing this for all those that didn’t believe in themselves.