Signed

Kayla - West Baden, Indiana
Entered on December 6, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe that the outsider holds

unexpected wisdom. The outsider is usually a

person that doesn’t fit the standard of the

people in our society because of their unique

conditions, thoughts, and circumstances. I look

on this in sad realization for I have an outsider

in my life that I hold quite dear to my heart. I

know that my outsider has faced ridicule by a

few people that define themselves as

supposedly superior. What I have to say to

these people is that they have limited

knowledge or understanding.

The outsider can come in a multitude of

forms, but some are more recognizable than

others. They can be family members, friends,

or just minor acquaintances. In my case the

outsider in my life is my mildly autistic sister. I

never really thought of her as an outsider until

about high school when I started to open my

eyes for the first time. The warning bell went

off when they caught this boy picking on her

and needless to say he was lucky that I wasn’t

the one that caught him. Yes, I’m the

protective older sister that will jump to her

defense when I find it necessary. In many

ways we operate as two normal sisters would

like when she sneaks into my room and takes

something without my permission.

My frustrations for how some people

treat my sister never seem to end and I’m

never fully satisfied. I felt slightly annoyed

when the school called to tell my father that

she refused to do her math. I told him that if I

was stuck doing just adding and subtracting

for five or six years straight I’d be really

bored by now. The school finally started

challenging her with different forms of

arithmetic. I had to remind myself that they

didn’t understand my sister the way I did, but

it still bothered me. My sister can draw better

pictures than my poorly crafted stick people,

she can name a large variety of dinosaurs and

animals that I have never heard of, she

probably knows more Spanish than I do, and

I’m very proud to say that she’s a better

speller than me. However, I’m worried that

these talents will be pushed under the rug in

the future.

A few years ago I found a piece of paper

out of her diary. I don’t remember exactly

what it said, but I remember the theme. She

was conveying her feelings of loneliness and

alienation from the world. In the paper we

were the humans and she was a different

species. She surprised me by identifying that

she knew she wasn’t like everyone else, but

she didn’t understand why. I found wisdom in

that piece of paper that was signed “The

Outsider.”