Discovering his genius


Since my son’s diagnosis with multiple learning disabilities* four years ago, we have been on quite a roller coaster.

He is severely dyslexic. His ability to comprehend written words is practically non-existent. Oh, he can read. He can make the sounds in his mind or aloud. But his brain processes that information differently, making him unable to remember what he read when he’s finished.

So he learns differently than most people. He remembers by hearing. He masters by doing.

But despite this (or perhaps because of it?) he’s a bright kid, with a great vocabulary and a freakish memory. And while I have no doubt he will be a productive member of society someday, the challenge at hand is getting him out of 7th grade.

This has been on our fridge for years. We speak in terms of bird and fish often.

This has been on our fridge for years. We speak in terms of bird and fish often.

When frustration hits us, we talk openly about his differences. He knows he has a “learning” challenge, not a “knowing” challenge. What’s different for him is the way he learns, not the amount he is capable of learning. And once he masters something he owns it in a way that a neuro-typical learner does not.

He knows his genius is in there.

But it’s hard for the rest of the world to see it. Sometimes, it’s even hard for me to see.

Last night, for the first time, I really, really saw it. So  indulge me while I share.

He’s working on a computer assignment for school, and using a program to develop a computer animation. (His school is very tech-advanced.) After school, I heard him on the phone. I stuck my head in to see what was going on, and I saw him with his iPhone propped up facing his computer screen. He was explaining to a classmate how to do the assignment while showing the steps via Face Time. I recognized the classmate’s voice, and I was stunned. He was helping one of the “smart kids” do his homework.

A couple of hours later, I heard him discussing it again. Once more I stood quietly and listened. This time he was explaining the steps to the process in a linear manner – something he has NEVER been able to do. You know, first you do step 1, then step 2, and so on.

This ability – processing information in a logical, sequential manner – is one of the hardest things for a dyslexic to do. (To understand this better, click this LINK. This is the best explanation of how a dyslexic brain processes information that I’ve ever seen.)

The woman in the video is Diana Vogel, The Kid Whisperer from Australia. The first time I saw it I was finally able to understand how this seemingly disorganized brain had an ABILITY, not a disability. That BECAUSE of the way it worked, not in spite of the way it worked, he would be able to accomplish great things. That this challenge was a K-12 problem, not a life-long problem. That my vision of him was accurate, not just a mother’s dream.

In the video linked above, Vogel confirms my theory. “This [dyslexic] brain, if we can get it through school, has the ability to shape and change our world. Whereas this [normal] brain, while also having the ability to shape and change our world, has been trained to only look at the information that was demanded, and not all the information that it contains.”

What I saw last night, the thing I’ve been waiting for years to see, was his genius beginning to appear.

Not long ago I wrote about my longing for the world to see my son the way I see him. Last night I got my first glimpse of it. And my heart soared.

A LITTLE MORE INFORMATION ABOUT DYSLEXIA AND FRACTURED THINKING:

For more information on non-linear thinking click HERE: http://www.akidjustlikeme.com/id79.htm

To see a video with dyslexic simulations:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gwZLFTW4OGY

*Their word, not mine. 

_____________________________________________

Do you have a story to share about someone who learns differently? Do you learn differently? Please share!

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113 Comments

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113 responses to “Discovering his genius

  1. That was beautiful! Thank you for sharing! Discovering the brilliance in each child is so rewarding!

  2. Hi there. Thank you so much for posting this. I don’t have children, but the love of my life is dyslexic (he says he was diagnosed with ADD as well, when he was young, but I don’t see that, especially after watching your video).

    He gets so discouraged and down on himself (he just started a new job and is having trouble) and I just don’t know what to do. He’s 40 years old, and seems to have just accepted that he is how he is, whether he likes it or not. Especially since starting his new job, he often says “I don’t know what’s wrong with me…” Since your husband has just found out that he was dyslexic, I was wondering if there’s anything he (or you) have found out that may help him in approaching the things he needs to learn for this new job in a different way. They’re really putting on the pressure for him to learn things, and it’s getting to him. Having had little to no contact with dyslexia other than people saying they have it, I don’t know what to do to help him, and it breaks my heart to see him struggling so hard.

    Your son is so lucky to have a mother who loves and supports him, and wants to help him any way she can. My love didn’t have that growing up, but I hope to be able to give it to him now, for what it’s worth.

    Thank you,

    ~A

    (PS- I noticed that you often visit the blogs of those who comment, I wanted to warn that my main blog is 18+ (Mature Content) and will possibly be offensive, so please don’t feel you need to return the visit out of politeness or whatever.)

    • Your loved one is lucky to have you at his side. My husband struggled for decades before diagnosis, and still does in many ways.

      What he has learned is that he cannot learn the way other people do. In his profession, continuing education is essential. Whenever possible, he attends conferences instead of doing self-study to pass his certification exams, and allows plenty of time when reading is the only way.

      What works best for him is taking notes on the reading material. It seems that the action of writing down the relevant information is what enables him to remember it. Sometimes he has a notebook with most of the original material re-written! But that’s what works for him.

      There’s a wonderful resource called Learning Ally, that provides audio books for people with learning challenges. Definitely check them out: LearningAlly.org.

      And feel free to keep in touch. My email address is happinessengineer (at) yahoo (dot) com.

  3. aspiringjournalistx

    Reblogged this on aspiringjournalistx.

  4. I’m so happy you are beginning to see the genius in your son!! He needs to see it too. I’m on a hidden dyslexia kick right now – reading The Gift of Dyslexia really opened my eyes. My dad died when I was young, but it turns out he had it. That’s where I got it, and my daughter got it from me. The other day my girl told me she was glad she has this kind of brain, this was good to hear. I’m through with focusing on all the stuff she’s no good at, I’m no good at. We’re not dumb after all, we’re just not good at holding facts we can’t see fitting into a larger whole. My daughter is a gifted artist. They say very often people with this kind of wiring have other gifts.

    Best to you and your son!!!!

    • I read The Gift of Dyslexia for the first time four years ago, and two years ago we did the full Davis Correction program. It unlocked my son’s brain for all of us. My little dude gets his “Gift” from his dad, and I absolutely love watching the two of them get their creative minds together and come up with new things.

      And I’d love to see some of your daughter’s art!! If you’d like to, you can hop over to my Facebook page and post something for us all to see!

      • wow, I’ve just been reading about the Davis program…so you found it beneficial? That’s wonderful. My daughter is 17, I have felt something was up with her for awhile, but she always passed her classes, As and Bs, but with so so much effort. Now that she’s older and we can talk about what is going on inside her, I’ve gotten a better sense of what’s going on. After reading the G of D book, my mind was on fire, I started thinking of various family members and wondering about their past educational experiences. I called my brother, who is a creative genius, and it turns out he was diagnosed with D when he was in 2nd grade, but of course he’s 17 years older than me so I never heard a thing about it. Then I talked to his daughter and she starts telling me that her two kids, both artists, are having trouble in school, they are “reading backwards” or “no longer enjoy reading”. And the lightbulb went off. I suddenly started to understand my crazy family, this strain of creativity, mutant it always seemed, and why so many of us have felt we didn’t belong. I only wish I could talk to my father about this, but he’s been gone for a long time.

        My daughter’s art, two pieces of it anyway, is on my blog. You’re welcome to look at it.
        So happy I found your blog ;)

  5. Reblogged this on O2B heavenly minded and commented:
    Everyone is a genius but if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing it is stupid — Albert Einstein

  6. I am was so happy when reading your post and watching the video. I have never been diagnosed with dyslexia but I’ve often thought I am dyslexic. However I’ve never looked at it in a negative way, I’ve always thought it was interesting and I understood that I learn different from other “normal” brained people. Thank you so much, your post made me feel wonderful :)

  7. Thank you so much for this post. The video finally made me understand what my husband has been trying to explain to me for years. He was diagnosed with dyslexia as a child and had to develop many out-of-the-box methods for learning. I took these methods for granted until our daughter was diagnosed a few years ago. I’m such a ‘normal’ thinker that I had problems explaining things in a way she could understand. I now turn to him for ideas on how to best help her learn. The best part is watching her come up with her own ideas. She knows that she excels at art and music so she tries to incorporate one or both into learning a new task. Her last idea: record the multiplication tables to music and listen repeatedly. I can’t wait to see the results.

    • When my husband saw this video he said it was the first time he ever really understood his brain and how it worked. I, too, didn’t understand how/why my learning methods didn’t work for him. We went to college together, took many of the same classes, but had to do things in very different ways to succeed.

      Now with the two of them and their cool, creative brains I’m the one who feels different!

  8. Praise God for hidden treasures & the encouragement we get from moments like the one you had.

    I’m a computer programmer by hobby & profession. Is it that that he does well? I know many people struggle to concpeptialize & understand programming – maybe he would be / is good at it? Just wondering.

    Blessings to you & family.

  9. Fascinating read! (I am currently getting my master’s in education.) I am so sorry for the struggles your son has faced, yet I am so excited to work with students like him!

    Cheers to you!
    Courtney Hosny

    • Courtney, the students you work with are lucky to have you! How I wish all of my son’s teachers were enthusiastic about working with dyslexic kids! Good luck to you in your studies, and thank you for choosing to serve in education.

  10. Alex Doriot

    Awesome encouragement for anyone. God created us all with different ways to learn, and He never intended us to judge ourselves by how we compare to others.

    • Alex, I agree with you completely. And until the 20th century, when we became a literate society, these differences went unnoticed. Dyslexics were gifted artists, musicians, military leaders — because of their unique thinking style. But as written language overtook skill ad talent as a measure of success that changed. But I have a theory: as we become a more automated society it will shift back.

  11. You truly are an incredible person and in response to the Albert Einstein quote I think it’s similar to telling your child how beautiful they are as they grow up everyday. Telling your child how pretty or handsome they are- not just on the outside but on the inside as well makes them feel wanted and treasured. They grow up feeling loved.
    My Mum said this to me, and reading this post just reminds me of how lucky I ‘am to have a mum like mine, just like how lucky your son is to have a mum like you!

    • Thank you, Connor, for your kind words. I tell him that he is exactly what God intended him to be, therefore he is perfect. It would be easy for his go grow up feeling broken or defective, so my #1 priority is to foster his confidence. If I do that, the rest will fall into place.

  12. My cousin’s child was diagnosed at an early age and she went through numerous battles with the school and other agencies to get him educated properly. It was all worth it. He is now a Sargent in the Army and doing quite well. patience and perseverance. You are doing a terrific job is recognizing his worth and promoting what comes naturally to him.

    • There is no greater ally than a determined mother :-) I’m so happy to hear that your cousin’s child has accomplished so much. He is most certainly a better soldier because of the patience and perseverance!

  13. thaddeushwj

    Hi there! You are so blessed to see the genius in your son! :) Someday both you and I know that your son will become an amazing person, who’s willing to help others despite his challenges. Good luck and congratulations :)

  14. Once upon a time, I had a great math teacher. He knew his subject so well, he could teach it to any student, from any direction. He didn’t expect the students to understand him. Instead, he made it his goal to understand his students.
    He said he almost flunked out of high school, because he was dyslexic.
    But then, he came up with some interesting ways to remember things…and it worked. He explained how he took chemistry and visualized the different groups of chemical families “holding hands with each other.”
    In the end, he went to college and got a double major in math and chemistry—and became a teacher..
    On the first day of my Algebra class, he said: “Hello! Let’s find out what kind of minds are in this group. Question #1: There is a bug on the table and it is planning to fly up to the ceiling. The ceiling is (xxxx) inches from the top of the table and the bug is going to fly upwards at approximately (xxx) inches per second. How long will it take it to get to the ceiling?”
    Some students immediately began working on an answer. Others sighed. What does it matter? If the bug wants to get to the ceiling, it will get there, give or take a few seconds.
    THEN the professor said, “OK. For the ones who weren’t interested in the first question, here is question #2: A bug is sitting on the table and it is going to fly up to the ceiling. Will it slowly rotate on the way up so it can land on his feet, or will it quickly flip over at the last minute?
    Oooooooh, what a wonderful question! I closed my eyes so that I could imagine the possibilities.
    Some of the children who had solved the first question—got rather annoyed with the second question. One boy said, “There is no way to come up with an equation for that.”
    Maybe not, but what an interesting picture it creates in the mind!
    “Aha! the professor smiled as he looked around the room. “I see I will be teaching this class from more than one direction!”
    It was the best math class ever. I learned so much from that man.

  15. How did I miss this? Fantastic post, and definitely worthy of FP! It’s sad how many kids who are out there who need to survive school in order to see how smart they actually are.

    • It’s sad to see how many just grow up thinking they are defective because they don’t do things the typical way. We are losing out on so much genius because it’s mistaken for ADD or bad behavior.

      BTW, did you ever get tll the spines out?? If not, try duct tape. (Boy mom trick.)

  16. Wow, I have to give credit where credit is due, having the patience for a kid with certain special need takes a lot of patience. I am glad you child is with you instead of someone with no patience. Thanks for being who that child needs you to be, God will reward you.

    • Thank you, Johns448. I feel like I have received my rewards in advance of earning them. The way I see it is that I needed him as much as he needed me. Thanks for stopping by and for adding to the conversation.

  17. I’ve bookmarked the video for later. My best friend has worked with her dyslexia since she was a child. Her memory is outstanding but her mom cried when, as a child she said she wanted to be a writer. She has amazed me in her ability to do all the things dyslexics “aren’t supposed to be able to do”. And she writes and edits articles for several online magazines, and has been reposted in the Times Tech section.

    • I love hearing such success stories. It’s important to understand that affects the WAY people learn, not the CAPACITY for learning. Dyslexia and intelligence are separate things. The video is great, isn’t it?? Because it presents it in such a simple way, even us linear thinkers can understand it!

  18. When I started grade school, I was dyslexic. Many of my middle school teachers failed me on projects, and forcefully told me “I wasn’t applying myself”. Reading comprehension was my worst subject, usually raking in D’s and F’s. While in Math, to my surprise, I was consistently receiving A’s.

    When I got to college, I realized I didn’t have a learning disability at all, and was near the top of my class with a 3.8 GPA. Now in my career, I’ve noticed I work differently than other people. But I understand that just because it is different, doesn’t make it wrong. In fact, I’ve been commended in the work place by every boss I’ve ever worked for. The over-whelming comments I receive are about my ability to focus and concentrate, even amidst noise and distraction.

    I not only except that I’m different, I embrace it. I have weaknesses just like everyone else, but I work at them every day.

    Thank you for this post. It brought a smile to my face. I wish you and your son the best of luck. I know he will do well. :)

    • I’m so happy to hear this, nmbpro! I sure do hate the term “disability.” As you said, it’s a learning difference. Nothing else. I’m happy to see that you embrace your differences, and capitalize on them for your success. Keep up the good work, and keep encouraging others with similar differences to find their genius!

  19. I’m not sure if this would help but I heard a story on NPR about a font designed by/for dyslexics: http://www.pixelscript.net/gilldyslexic/ I’d be curious to see if this helps (if you didn’t already know about it of course)!

    • Thank you! I had not seen that font before. There’s another similar one, but I think over the summer I’m going to do some testing with my son to see is any of them make a difference to him. I’m so glad you shared the link.

      P.S. I like that you like semicolons. I’m an em-dash overuser. ;-D

      • Hehe, that’s awesome thank you. I hope it will be more widely available soon, it’s supposed to help a huge range of dyslexics. The story I heard had the font’s creator talking about how dyslexics see letters as three dimensional and because of that they rotate them. It was really interesting!

  20. Thank you for sharing this

  21. My husband has dyslexia (and dyspraxia). He was diagnosed 30+ years ago when it was a ‘new’ diagnosis. Despite his difficulties, he managed to go to a top university, get a good degree and trained as a teacher. Back when he was a child, his mother knew there was something different about her son, and it was through her fighting to get him support in school that he has been able to achieve so much. I find it frustrating sometimes when all the processing-type tasks have to be done by me – but my husband has his own strengths and we’re a great team. Also, he’s one of the most clever people I have ever met. Thank you for this lovely post and best of luck to you and your son! :-)

    • My husband is dyslexic as well, but wasn’t diagnosed until a few years ago. Once we had a diagnosis for our boy, everything instantly became clear about his struggles learning and his reading challenges that exist to this day. He works harder than most people, but has persevered and accomplished every educational and career goal he set for himself, including a Master’s degree and a 25-year military career! But when he was a child there were many, many people who said he’d never do it. I like to think about the heights our boy will hit, because he is surrounded by people who believe he can and will do great things!

  22. Heather Beth

    Thank you for sharing – this is such an important topic and you write about it with fluidity and accuracy. I found out about my learning differences when I was in Community College and took a 1 credit ‘how you learn’ kind of course. It changed my life. I had moments where I broke down crying with frustration and simultaneous relief as it was confirmed that I had learned many coping mechanisms throughout my k-12 experiences in order to make it through. There were a lot of ways the school helped accommodate me and despite the fact that I had multiple learning challenges (for instance taking SUPER long to complete exams) I still retained high grades and felt a deeper sense of integration than most of the students around me. I have faith that your son will THRIVE and I’m so glad he has a mother like you!

    • Thank you, Heather. Discovering your learning and thinking style is such an important tool for every type of interpersonal relationship. My husband (who is also dyslexic) and I have very different thinking styles, which is often the source of conflict. But understanding that it is our styles that are in conflict, not us, that keeps us going. (Married 27 years!)

  23. Loved the post. I am a little unsure what more I should say. I am just happy for you and for your son. God bless! (And your post made me smile: a genuine, warm, heartfelt smile)

  24. Oh yes!
    I have always had difficulty. I sing opera, but never learned to sight read music. My mind gets tangled up in sheet music, and gets lost in a web of lines and spaces. I misread. However, if I can hear the music (even if it is extremely complicated)–I learn very quickly. One music teacher said, “Stop worrying about the fact that you cannot read music–you have an incredible tonal memory.”
    The reason that I worry is because I know many people will never consider me as a good musician because I don’t know how to learn the “right” way (the acceptable way). I don’t understand. What difference does it make how I learn, as long as I learn?
    I see the world a little differently. I don’t think inside the box because, most of the time, my mind doesn’t even see the box.
    While I was taking a creative writing class, a professor asked, “Do you have difficulty with math?”
    “Oh yes! ”
    “I can see why,” she said. “You are the most non-linear thinker I have ever met. Your mind is going in 3 directions at once. Great for creative writing, but not for math! Math is very linear.”
    (Well….if my mind is going in 3 directions at once, I guess that at least explains why I get lost so easily. :)

    • “Because most of the time my mind doesn’t even see the box.” I love this! I love how clearly you articulated this extremely difficult concept!

      My little dude also has an ear for music. At 12, it’s still developing, but his voice teacher told me just yesterday after his lesson that he has the ability to make music a lifelong pursuit. This summer he’ll go to a music workshop where they’ll put many different instruments in his hands to try them out. I have a feeling he’s going to find something new there!

      And as for getting lost, there’s now an app for that! Thank you for stopping by, Mary. Looking forward to visiting your blog soon.

  25. Elizabeth E George

    I love this! Thank you for being part of the encouragement that kids with disabilities need. It’s truly amazing what creative and alternative minds ( I choose to call it that, because it is a better fitting term than “abnormal” or “abnormalities”) can do. I completely agree that society needs the perspectives of those who aren’t more so “trained” and tend to overlook the unique, organic form that our world takes much of the time. More of a tendency to take a different type of view, from another angle is exactly what is needed to truly inspire and guide us to positive change. And such a thing needs guidance. Nice post.

    • Thank you, Elizabeth, for those supportive words. I have three boys, and each of them has a different learning style. They will all do great things, I’m sure. But I truly believe that the one who will have the most impact is the one who has overcome the most, and thinks the broadest.

  26. Certainly reminds me of my time in Elementary school. Certainly a powerful testimony here. Great post and great site!

  27. I am lucky to come across today and you have made my Friday that much better, amongst all my work! Yes i am reading Freshly pressed instead of replying emails.

    This post touched me. Thank you.

    • Michelle, thank you for those kind words. Emails will still be there in a little while. ;-)

      By writing about my son and his challenges, I hope to leave something with the reader that they will take back to their lives, and apply to someone they encounter. If I manage that, then I get to change the world, too. One tiny step at a time.

  28. I really enjoyed reading your post. I think it’s very inspirational and bang on. I’m currently doing my Masters in Applied Disability Studies and we often discuss in class that even the term “disability” is outdated and should be replaced with “ability” because really everyone is on a spectrum of abilities, excelling in different areas and in different ways.

    • I try not to get hung up on words, because we have to have terminology to engage in discussion. However, I’d like to see that word replaced as well. My son isn’t unable to learn, he just learns differently.

      Thank you for answering the call to serve those who are different. For you will make the world a better place.

  29. Very true, I think we need to believe in ourselves that we have the ability. Because this is what makes all the difference.

  30. Thanks for that link on brain organization, I’m going to use it with my students who have dyslexia. I also have a son with significant cognitive disability. I however, consider him a genius given how his brain is so different from ours. I am so grateful that he goes to a school where his teachers also see this.

    • First, let me talk to teacher: I love this video. My husband’s dyslexia was diagnosed when our son’s diagnosis came. He spent his whole life not understanding how or why he thought differently than others. When he saw this video he told me it was the first time he truly understood his own brain. So I’m happy you’ll be able to share it with students and give them some understanding about themselves.

      Then, let me talk to mom: I read a bit about your son. It only takes a moment hearing about another mother’s challenges to put all of ours in perspective. I’m sure you even have someone that makes your story seem small. That’s the nature of perspective.

      Then, let me talk to the wife of the Italian husband: I get you. My Sicilian Mother-In-Law created one, too. She even says “sammich.”

  31. Beautifully written!

    I know my BoyGenius has challenges, but many of them are of his own making. He is my non-typical NT child (well, he’s my *only* child) and as smart as he is he thinks differently from his peers and that gets him down sometimes, as well as lonely. I can only imagine how much more heart-wrenching it has been for you and yours at times.

    I’m happy for both of you that his genius is starting to shine through.

    • It’s so important that thinking differently isn’t regarded as thinking wrongly, and that these boys don’t see themselves as defective. I believe that great things are in store for them, because we have their backs!

  32. If I remember correctly from grade school, listing the steps in a process is hard for most kids, dyslexic or not. One or two steps always get left out, or bunched together, or stated in the wrong order, etc. Sometimes I think we forget how difficult that “simple” process can be when one is just learning.

    • Yes, sequential instructions are hard for young learners. But my son is past the age where typical learners have mastered that skill. I’m blessed to have a team of teachers, counselors, and friends who understand that he can’t do what typical learners do, but that it isn’t a reflection of his intelligence.

      P.S. I loved your Shakespeare cartoons!

  33. You are gifting your son a message of possibility through invested effort and a positive perspective; mapping his world with potential. Beautiful!

    • Potential is the magic word. We all have the capacity for greatness, in some way. Limiting a person based on a diagnosis is tragic.
      I’ve been peeking around your site today. I think we’re going to learn a lot from each other. :-)

  34. Hi Lisha,
    I always wonder about these diagnosis of multiple learning disabilities. Have you thought about getting a new diagnosis since he is four years older now. Maybe there is another way to handle this so your on a smaller roller coaster?

    • Interesting that you should mention that. I met with my son’s school counselor this morning, and one of my questions was to ask about whether it was time for a re-eval. We’re going to do it this summer.

      Our roller coaster now is definitely smaller than it was. It gets a little smoother every year because my husband and I are committed to helping him in every way possible. Re: the dyslexia diagnosis, though, it is hereditary. My husband is also dyslexic, so he has an insight into our son that is the best possible tool for helping him. It’s also a peek into his future, which should be quite bright!

  35. You have no idea how glad I am to read this, it’s so nice to see a mum appreciating her son. I am disabled and was made to feel stupid when I was a child (Asian mentality, where disabled = broken) but have really changed myself through my own actions, not others’ negativity. Something which really helped was a uni project for disabled students called ‘thisability’ which encouraged us to share our skills and see that we are not ‘disabled’ but just need a different route to get to our goal. Well done to your son!!

    • I’m so sorry that you grew up feeling broken. My #1 job parenting this child is to make him understand that he is not defective, that he is exactly what he was meant to be.

      I checked out some of your photos. You have a great eye! My favorites were the purple irises and the pink flowering trees (dogwoods?).

      Keep spreading the beauty. And thanks for stopping by.

  36. That’s awesome that you help him recognize his potential and do not let him feel limited by diagnosis. It is so sad when kids feel that they are unable to achieve greatness because of a label that was placed on them that they then feel defines them. My husband and have done a lot of work with teenagers and have seen this truth with them. Glad you got to experience such an encouraging moment with your son!
    Blessings
    -Jen
    http://thelilyandthemarrow.wordpress.com/

  37. Very cool. Kids like this who are nurtured properly eventually become some of the brightest among us. Just my opinion. Thanks for sharing.

  38. Excellent! Lovely post. Thank you for sharing this example of your boy’s genius. And congrats on being Freshly Pressed!

    • Thanks, Chris. I know you get this, that we all have the potential for greatness within us. Thanks so much for grabbing the screen shot for me today, too! That was the first time I saw it. :-)

  39. Really very insightful. As a teacher, this helps me understand issues from a different perspective

    • Oh, Joan. You could not have said anything that means more to me than that. :-) Estimates say that about 10% of our population is dyslexic. So do the math, and think about how many students think this way. Having more teachers become aware of this will help these students to blossom.
      Thank you for stopping by, and for the kind words.

  40. My best friend is dyslexic. Throughout high school, I remember sitting next to her as she struggled to follow the words on the page and to sort out her thoughts immediately in order to write essays and complete assignments.

    Earlier this year, she graduated with her PhD in molecular biotechnology. Certainly, there are all kinds of genius, and not every dyslexic child will (or needs to) go on to get a doctorate, but she’s a pretty strong case for what perseverance and learning how to manage your struggles – and realise your abilities – can do. You’re son’s going to be just fine.

    • Erin, your friend is lucky to have you. Her struggles would have been greater if not for her friends. I LOVE hearing success stories about folks with learning differences. My own husband’s dyslexia was diagnosed when my son’s was. He had to live his first 45 years thinking he was defective. No one knew, no one understood. He just thought he was broken. But today he holds a Master’s from Syracuse, and is an IT genius! Looking at him makes me sure that my boy will, indeed, be fine!

  41. Charleenemorgan

    This is wonderful!!

  42. Donnell Jeansonne

    I don’t know if you’ve heard of or seen this, but there is a program called Open Dyslexic that is free and it is a program that changes the computer font to one that is more readable for people with dyslexia. It might help if he has to do a lot of homework on the computer. Here is the link: http://opendyslexic.org/

    I always had a learning problem with numbers. I just get so confused looking at numbers and my brain can’t process math problems very well.

    It’s difficult, but I’m sure he will overcome his learning disability. Teachers don’t always consider veering off the beaten path of their usual methods, but that’s what some kids need to help them understand. It isn’t that they can’t learn, they just need a different method of being taught.

    • I’ve heard of it, but I never downloaded it. Thanks for the reminder.
      Dyslexia is hereditary. My boy is just like his dad. It comforts me to see my husband’s success (after teachers and standardized tests told him he would never amount to anything) and to know that my dude will someday rise above it, too.

  43. You make me proud to be a mother.

  44. There is something so special about those moments when we get a glimpse of the grown up people our kids will one day be. Beautiful.

    As a homeschooling family we’ve been able to tweak, ignore, manipulate, toss out, retry, stumble through, and soar beyond different learning approaches without fear that the kids would “fall behind”. We know there is no “behind”. There is only forward and everyone gets there at their own pace filled with starts and stops and surges. :)

    • OMG. You homeschool?? And I thought I couldn’t think any higher of you.

      Yes, his pace is different than that of others. But he’ll climb every mountain he sets his sights on, I have no doubt.

  45. Greg Alexander

    The reason he has always been so welcome in our house isn’t because he has special needs but because he is special to us as an individual with unique qualities separating him from the herd. It’s great to hear that he is coming into his own as a young man.

    • I know you get this, El. A mother’s eyes can see beyond what’s there, and see what will be someday, long before the rest of the world gets a glimpse. <3

      So happy for you with the success of your book! You'll be my Yoda when the time comes, right??

  46. Thanks for sharing this, Lisha! I have always wondered what it is like for people with dyslexia, and I, too, got a lot from the video link you provided. I can also see and agree with what the “Kid Whispere” said about being able to see things in a different way than the “normal” think and how this will expand the world and its possibilties for someone, especially once they are out of the contraints of school. Maycee doesn’t have trouble with her studies or linear thinking, but since being diagnosed with two types of anxiety disorder we have had to modify how she does things in school so she can cope. When her anxiety wells up, she cannot concentrate in class, and so modifications need to be made. It has opened my eyes greatly working with school staff, her therapist, as well as Maycee directly on how not understanding the true problem can affect the child’s performance in school. Knowledge is power, and children with special abilities will do great things in life like you son and my daughter. :-) XOXO

    • I’m so glad you’re focusing on solutions to Maycee’s challenges instead of seeing them as obstacles. I truly believe that the resilient adults they will become will rise and tower above all the “successful” students they sit among now.

      Thanks so much for your kind words. :-)

  47. Oh Lish! I know sooooo many kids who “outgrow” this diagnosis. As he can select courses that interest him, he won’t seem “impaired” anymore. He won’t be the fish trying to climb the tree. He is swimming! And he will find the right “school” of kids to gang out with. He’s not alone. So not alone! Does he play Minecraft? Maybe we can get our two boys together and listen. ;)

    • Re; Minecraft… he’s finally getting his “own” computer, so he might just be able to link up! So far he just has a school laptop that doesn’t allow gaming.

      The beauty of it for me is knowing that he’s just like his dad. Mr. Wonderful didn’t have the benefit of parents who understood what was going on, and he had to navigate the path alone. My dude will never be misunderstood, because he has us. So “rise above it” he will!

  48. I am so grateful to have had the chance to see it, too. Thank you. ♥

    • Deborah!!! I’m so happy to see you here!!! I MUST go change my email settings so I can find your posts again. I can’t tell you how much it means to see you here!

      I’m gonna hop over to your place and catch up. Tonight. No more putting it off.

  49. Your son is blessed to have you as his mother. Can’t wait to see what the future holds for him as his genius is exposed.

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