I left school at the age of 16 and having already struggled through my school years I headed for college and struggled to learn once again. I enrolled on a Secretarial course that included additional qualifications in Maths, English and Office Studies, but college for me was merely a continuation of my school years.
College for me was merely a continuation of my school years. After leaving college I moved into the working world and although that didn’t start off too well, my working life slowly improved once I moved to a better company. I still didn’t understand my life or what was wrong with me at that point. There were times where I could feel myself mentally struggling, but again had no understanding as to what was going on.
Although it’s embarrassing to say that with a little education behind me, I’m not seeing that as my issue, because it clearly wasn’t. By because my parents kept my diagnosis a secret, my education was destined to fail and where the school could have asked questions they didn’t. It was clear to me I was struggling, my teachers were aware I was falling behind my peers but didn’t act on it. The system had let me down therefore I had little choice but to go to college and enrol on a secretarial and shorthand course. There were no other options open to me. I had no choice but to fall into line, but I wasn’t happy about it.
In college, I struggled to type with a manual typewriter and because there were only a handful of automatic ones and I didn’t know why I had a problem, I wasn’t in a position to ask for one. I remember struggling to press the keys down on my left side and not understanding why. I was told to try to speed up. The issue would continue to slow me down, so in speed tests I fell behind.
That was one issue. Another issue was that although I was completely mobile, I’d had a hard time getting shoes to fit over the years so in my first year of college I was parked off to hospital to have a bunion removed and having taken around 5 weeks of college I had an enormous amount of catching up to do. Sadly, the operation wasn’t a success, so I left college again and headed back to hospital for a second operation.
Although the time away from college didn’t help, I still struggled to understand how to learn or take in what was being taught. I felt stupid that others were clearly making good headway and I wasn’t. For my parents putting me through college was merely a box ticking exercise. They’d done their bit, or so they thought.
After leaving college I moved into the working world and although that didn’t start off too well in a small lawyer’s firm, my working life improved once I’d moved to a leading firm of lawyers in the City. It was a much bigger and better company and I soon settled into working life. Within a year I had moved my way up to working for a Partner in Commercial Property Law. I excelled and began to make a name for myself.
After a couple of years and having to work late evenings when needed, I requested a move to another Department and was given a new Partner to work for who had just joined the firm, this time in Commercial Litigation. It felt good that again I was making excellent strides. It felt good. My confidence soared.
That particular practice would be my home for the next few years. I had made lots of friends and was happy for the first time.