Claire - Princeton, New Jersey
Entered on December 18, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
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When I was young I was told to give up on school. That I was too stupid to go anywhere in life. I was told to go and learn how to stuff forks, spoons, and knifes into plastic bags for airplane meals. I was told that I was going nowhere. Now, as anyone can imagine, that would be painful, especially if you are only in second grade. All of this was because I had a hard time reading and understanding the way the teachers taught. Not because I was actually stupid. I just had a different learning style, I am Dyslexic. I never deny it; I take pride in being Dyslexic. It makes me different than everyone else out there. I am proud to be Dyslexic yet it seemed to make people think I was stupid. My pride refused to let me surrender. I refused to let the people’s ignorance bring me down; I refused to be the silverware bag stuffer, the mistress, the girl getting married in 8th grade. I wanted to be more. I wanted to be a dentist, a teacher, a director, an actress; I wanted to do so much more with my life. I wanted to read and understand, I wanted to stretch the capacity of brain. I knew I could stretch the capacity. So, I put my head down and I ran head on to the problem. I refused to let my learning differences, which I cherish, bring me down. I drilled it out, and I learned how to read. It was hard, involving many hours of tutoring and a lot of help from my family. I was involved in strenuous hours, hours that I hated, but hours that I needed to become who I wanted to be, who I knew I could be.

After tutoring and family teaching had reached its limit, my family discovered a school in New Jersey that was built for learning different kids. So my parents uprooted the family and moved to New Jersey. Though I hate New Jersey, I had to go if I wanted to reach what I could reach. As said in Man of La Mancha. “to reach the unreachable star.” That was what I was going for. I went there for two years, the first year I had a great teacher, Mrs. Wilson, I learned how to read and understand. I was finally done with all the tutoring and left both tutoring and school; to go for a fully mainstreamed school that offered help for kids with learning disabilities. I went there, a year later I was out of The Pennington Schools LD one-on-one programs, and fully mainstreamed. Eight years after the incident I am in Honors English, Honors German, Honor History, Honors Chemistry, and a dean’s list student. I believe, that your life will only be as big as your dreams. I believe that you can do what ever you want as long as you set you mind to it; a person can do anything.