“Mama read to me.” It’s a daily request that my toddler asks of me. If she had it her way we would read the whole library of books she has. Instead we set a limit and I pray it isn’t the same two books I read the night before… lately it has. She sure does have her favorites.
Down the road, at some point I will let my daughter know about my past struggle. That during reading time at my elementary school I walked down the hallway to a special room. That I went for extra help on nights and weekends to a center to work one on one with tutors. But for now I enjoy that she looks forward to hearing me read to her.
We have mastered our nightly routine snuggling in her bed with our preferred sides, pulling the covers up over us, getting comfortable and preparing for the upcoming tales. The sparkle and delight in her face as I read each page is the highlight of my day. Her giggles and facial expressions that permeate as we hear all about monkeys jumping on the bed, Llama llama or the adventurous tales of Clifford the Big Red Dog. Reading to her completes my day.
At one time reading was not an easy task for me…. it was a challenge.
Today, I am no longer ashamed that I ever needed extra help.
For many years I WAS.
I didn’t want friends to know.
I didn’t want anyone to know for that matter.
I didn’t want to be made fun of.
I didn’t want to be judged.
I didn’t want others to know I struggled.
I didn’t want to seem different.
…But I did need help.
Although it was a brief window in my life, I really do think if I didn’t get help, where would I be now?
Would I have been able to graduate high school with the grades I did?
Would I have been able to finish my bachelor’s degree?
Would I be where I am in my career?
These are some of the questions I do not have to worry about. I am worry free because I got help, my struggle was noticed and my family notified.
Thank you to my teachers, reading specialists, tutors and my parents for identifying the problem, taking actions and helping me to flourish. I am incredibly grateful. I can proudly declare that I HAD a reading disability and I overcame it.
Thank you for believing in me, for pushing me and for giving me the opportunity to show my true potential. I wanted to share that you can overcome challenges. Listen to your children’s teachers, encourage your kids to excel and great things can result.
Now as a parent I want to ensure my children succeed. I will listen to teacher suggestions and do anything I can to ensure if there is a struggle in any subject that help is given whether that help is given from myself, my husband or outside source.