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Life with a Learning Difference

Plano, Texas, US
Many people do not understand exactly what a learning difference is. If you surveyed and asked 100 people, “What is a learning difference?,” I believe many people would respond with the answer, “It is where you learn differently.” …and yes, that is part of it, but not all it. It is more than that… I have been diagnosed with a non-verbal learning difference that hinders me every day in life in ways that only I can see and people outside cannot. I struggle with reading sometimes, but it also affects parts of my social life which is very tough. Although my parents are strong supporters and try each and every day to find new ways to help me, I know deep inside it’s something I will live with for the rest of my life. I think to myself sometimes, “Why would God choose me as this person? What did I ever do?” I feel now it is actually more of a blessing in life then it is a put-down. There are many people in life also who have it a lot worse than me. People don’t understand what it’s like to be in someone’s shoes who has a learning difference. I go to a school in Dallas called Fairhill school which specializes in helping kids with needs like mine, although at times I’m scared and embarrassed to say where I go to school. Many teenagers respond with, “Is that the school for retards?” Simply, I believe they don’t understand, and maybe they never will. If that’s the case, then so be it, because I believe God has blessed every person in this world with something special… and it’s the people who make the most with what they have that end up on top. Lastly, I just want to thank all my family and friends for supporting me each and every day no matter what. I’ll end with my favorite quote of all time by the late great John Wooden: “Learn as if you were to live forever. Live as if you were to die tomorrow.”

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