My ‘Gift’

As I began to watch the Umbrella Academy series on Netflix in lockdown, I began to resonate with the story line, likening their feeling different and not understanding why, to my also feeling different without the understanding.

It took me until the age of 46 to know about cerebral palsy, another 10 years to know that my mental and emotional struggles were autism. It would also take me 46 years to be able to put pen to paper through my blog, not know that my being able to write is my ‘superpower,’ my gift to myself.

Although I feel better for knowing, it will never take away the hurt. The continual struggles, my inability to learn and being ridiculed because I was a ‘nice’ child, but failed to grasp even the basics in school. Teachers calling me out and those problems being ignored, as if I had no disability or struggles around my learning.

It was a smokescreen for what lay ahead. But it was always clear to me that I was continually struggling to grasp new concepts and as a result was continually lagging behind. Whilst my peers had finished their work, I would be told to speed up.

In truth, I needed a remedial education, now called a ‘basic skills development education.’ It’s an instruction provided to students who need more classroom support. I struggled to learn and with 37 children in a class, I had no realistic chance of achieving.

Looking back, struggling today with mental and emotional difficulties arising from my autism, I know that I didn’t fail myself, others have collectively failed me through their lack of understanding. Much like the ‘Umbrella Academy’ siblings I see myself as a misunderstood ‘superhero.’

With a successful 10+ year website and book behind me, I have finally been able to prove my worth and all my critics wrong.

14 Aug, 2020

4 thoughts on “My ‘Gift’

  1. Yours is indeed a gift, which greater powers had mapped out for you all along, having chosen you for this path long before you knew it and I am sure you now have many more admirers than critics.

    1. Thanks. Yes, it’s a path I couldn’t foresee, but a path I am completely at one with. I hope so.

      The way I see it, is that we’re all on this journey I call life together, we get to call the shots. We all have it in us to change our lives. My gift may belong to me, but what I write is universal.

      There is a message in each blog that enables others to think about their own lives, how they get to call the shots on their circumstances. We can take the journey together, changing things as we go. We all can.

  2. Your gift is positive and helps others. It reminds me that I also have a gift. My ‘gift’ has always felt like a ‘curse,’ but it’s also the only reason I have survived as long as I have.

    The biggest issue was ignoring my instincts and what my gift was telling me. I have always felt different and misunderstood which has made my life difficult, when all I had to do was accept that I am different and that it doesn’t make me a bad person.

    I have watched others waste their lives just trying to fit in with everyone and to be considered normal, when they weren’t. I’m just grateful that I figured out that I don’t have to live that way anymore.

    There isn’t any reason to continue to feel guilty for being true to myself for the first time in my life. Now I just have to figure out a way to put my gift to good use.

    1. I think you’re right Randy. There is no reason why you should continue to feel guilty for ‘being true to yourself.’

      Not everyone is able to have ‘a gift.’ I think I would start using your gift to your advantage and if that helps others, then that’s great. On the same token where you have watched others trying to fit in and be considered ‘normal.’ That is exactly what we have done.

      My disability and writing has taught me many things, most of all it has taught me that it’s okay to be ‘different’ to be who we are and to use what we’re given and be comfortable with it. That I matter. I finally have a voice.

      For those who may judge or are critical, they would judge and be critical anyway. Be who you are and get on with living your life. It’s okay to care, but we must care about ourselves and remember to put our thinking first.

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