This blog has literally been in the making all my life. Over the years several events were came about and eventually collided together to make this Blog a reality!
The Dyspraxia Side:
Once upon a long, long time ago, I was born. I would stumble through years of having not a clue what was wrong with me – nor did anyone else. I was pretty much alone-due to the fact I was an outcast compared to my peers and they saw this as a great opportunity to bully me to no end. After 9 years my diagnoses was made. Dyspraxia. The truth remains is that if my Dyspraxia was never discovered or if I never suffered with it then this blog would never even exist! However, I did suffer with it and it was diagnosed so here we are! My story of my Dyspraxia is what I have come to know as the standard story for most Dyspraxic people. I was different and was destined to never sink into the crowd but to forever stand out-because of this odd attribute I was bullied heavily. To add to this the schools I attended either gave very little to support me or no support what-so-ever, I got little support in Secondary School that was enough to keep me going, but this turned into almost non-existent help after just a couple of years. I was heavily punished for being different and finding work difficult, being discriminated by most of the teachers-one even told me that Dyspraxia didn’t exist! My self-esteem wasn’t exactly high during my school years. Once I left school and ventured into the outside world it only proved to be worse as the support on my own was even more lacking than that in school. The misunderstanding and people not giving me a chance at what I can do best (see that in the next chapter!) I was hardly put into situations where I could put my skills to the test. Dyspraxia is my burden, but also my gift!
The Computer & Creative Chapter:
’96 was the year my family got their first computer. I used it rarely, but when I did use it I only played educational games-while my peers were playing mature games (or at least that was what they were bragging about.) I was playing games that tested logic and reasoning and thus over the years I was building an incredible logical mind. my Dyspraxia held me back for over 7 years and wouldn’t allow me to use it. In ’99 saw the completion of the computer suite at my Primary School, and from my first go I was able to explore the computer that I couldn’t do on my home PC. From the first 5 minutes I had baffled the entire class by, without being shown or told, finding my way onto the internet like it was second nature-looking up pictures of planets, stars and the solar system (even finding a few animated pictures as well!). They actually asked me for help instead of asking the teacher-and they were the ones who bullied me! I thought if I helped them, they would become my friends…didn’t work. Still my passion to help others increased over the years from this! As the years rolled by, my knowledge and creativity grew and the computer helped me show this off.
In Secondary School people continued to ask me for help rather than the teacher, because of my ideas and knowledge, whenever there was a project that required the use of the computer most people wanted to team up with me-because I always got the highest mark! However I ended up doing most of the work and they get most of the credit-I realised I could work on my own with computers and produce the same standard work and get all the credit and so I broke off my ‘team play’ and did all IT work myself. Occasionally working as a team when I knew the other person would put a similar amount of effort in as I did. In year 8 saw my first major project : an anti-bullying slideshow, it was so good it was put up onto the school home page (However was secretly taken off when they had an update after about 6 months*). It gained me one week of respect before people continued with their bullying. My work was always creative and I surprised many teachers, seeing as I was very bright and switched on…yet was ‘lazy’ in their eyes. If they only knew the truth back then. I was just trapped in my own mind, only able to escape through computers…Computers are my catalyst! With this I was becoming incredibly frustrated with myself. As an ambition since I first saw the internet was to make my very own website…on what and how was another matter and a long distance off. It was the type of project I never, ever, thought I would accomplish. My increasing computer skills and creativity only meant that a large project was, inevitably, going to be born.
After my long years of school and college I emerged emotionally scarred and battered-on the outside was a person who was a bit off-balance and awkward. Inside was a fractured self-esteem that looked like it was doomed to remain in pieces, and so I ventured out into the world of work. With my pretty much indestructible enthusiasm I gained an apprenticeship (Basically a fixed work contract where you work and learn!) for 10 weeks using computers, despite being the new one I surpassed my fellow work apprentices with my incredible IT skills-however I was ‘replaced’ and stuck into a back office stapling work packs after just 5 weeks into it. Everyday. My creativity was squandered, and I had no access to computers, which was my pride and joy, whatever self esteem had been repaired was now crumbling away. After several weeks of mind numbing, boring, repetitive work my contract was completed and there was no room within the company to renew it. What a relief! I seem to think I got replaced because of my age, as they got in older people.
After a few months I secured another apprenticeship-this time I had control of the entire IT system and I rose to the challenge-I was able to challenge my creativity to a new professional level and succeeded dynamically. Unfortunately, just over half a year saw the company fold and so I looked elsewhere for work-despite many interviews it never got me anywhere. All feedback told me my CV is amazing and my interview was outstanding, but they gave the job to someone else. this happened countless times and I began to wonder…why? Then I decided in my next interview to not disclose my Dyspraxia, they didn’t ask me, so I didn’t say. I got the job. Suddenly my blood boiled , I came to the disgusting conclusion that for months I was being discriminated! I wanted to take action, I wanted people to understand.
Before I started with this company I was getting bad vibes, when I have these feelings they are seldom wrong. Whiling working for this new company I was vastly different from the workforce-having been the only Administrator against a group of workers-there are always conflicts within departments no matter where you go. As time went on the high-ups within the organisation would blame me for all mistakes, some were just human error, some were them not explaining what had to be done and most of is was actually their fault and just using me to blame. Eventually it was discussed by my Apprenticeship tutor for my Dyspraxia to be disclosed, but only if I feel comfortable doing it. I decided it was the best choice of action. Still no one knew what it was anyway so it didn’t help but at least I was trying my best. By the end I remember one little statement from one of the workforce, it’s inappropriate, disgusting and vulgar-but lets just say he called me one of the most horrid words you can tell to someone like me…”are you Retarded?” This was just more fuel to my burning fire.
Whenever there is an opportunity, no matter how small, I grab it. With my creativity, my computer skills, my drive to build myself a website and my Dyspraxia all it needed was glue to hold it together. This glue turned out to be supplied by my Half-brother, and was the opportunity to write a blog about anything I wanted to and so, in the later months of 2012 and early 2013 I began to plan, sketch and take late nights here and there to construct my Blog. After two Months of paper planning it was ready to create. Within that final day my blog was ready and with one click it went live.
The Fantastic Future:
With my success, my drive now is to push this blog further and further forwards. My mission is to get Dyspraxia widely known and accepted as something that isn’t a problem but just a different ability pool. As anyone with experience, and not just for Dyspraxia, but with anything. The population of those with Disabilities aren’t disabled- only the society around us forces this, in fact those with Learning Differences are overally more creative & cleverer than your average template of a person, we are more hard working and we have better understanding of other peoples’ thoughts and feelings. All we need is a chance to prove ourselves-some make it and some don’t but that’s nothing to do with us. You can’t make a judgement on a music CD until someone puts it into a player and that’s like us-give us an inch and you can have a mile!
Like This Page:
Truthfully I would not ask you to like any pages-I would let you do that on your own accord! However by liking this page it shows that you support the ideas to give those with Learning Differences a chance to shine.
[*I still have the project in all its original, cheesy, 12 year old pupil style format SlideShow-I may upload it to my blog at some point!]