It is time I made an embarrassing confession: I have dyslexia.
I was recently looking through some old reports taken as a child, and my learning difficulty was quite damning. When I was twelve years old, I had the spelling capability of a six-year-old. My vocabulary was in the 3rd percentile. In other words, 97% of children my age had a superior grasp of the language.
(Despite all this, the report stated I had an above-average IQ. I wish someone had told me that then so I didn’t spend years thinking I was stupid.)
It was embarrassing to read. Though it was also quite uplifting. My innate interest in English and writing allowed me to excel past my handicap and surpass many of my neurotypical peers. In secondary school, I was put in the highest class for English Language and achieved A’s and A*’s in my GCSE and A-level exams.
At university, the head of my course was surprised when I told him I was dyslexic. “It doesn’t show at all,” he told me.
Without sounding arrogant, I believe my grasp of the English language exceeds that of many people my age who don’t have dyslexia. I love writing and linguistics with a passion, which is why, despite my sometimes frustrating disability (among other things), I have pushed myself to become better.
It can still be challenging at times, and there are still a handful of language conventions that cause me pain. But, nonetheless, I will endeavour to fight this handicap and continue to grow and learn.
Hopefully, others who suffer from dyslexia will find my website and writings useful. Know you are not alone and are capable of amazing things.
I’d like to thank my mum who helped to get me diagnosed as a child and fought to defend me against those who were sceptical. Without her, my school years would have been a lot, lot harder. I may have even given up on the idea of writing entirely. I owe her so much.