How on earth did I get to being a teacher by the age of 22 with my learning difficulties is beyond me. When I was fully diagnosed with dyslexia at the age of 21 the physiologist said he was amazed how I got this far in education with very little help due to my profound dyslexic struggles ( not going to lie hearing this gave me a major feel good moment that lasted longer than normal). But it wasn’t until weeks later and after re reading the report I had a mini break down. I realised that I defied the odds and got so far when i shouldn’t have. I thought I must have blagged my way this far with people taking pity on me. Never thinking that I worked dam hard to get here!
I tried to talk to my then friends about it but I couldn’t formulate the right words to explain my current internal struggle and when the conversation moved onto my struggles with ADHD one said oh don’t go onto Ritalin you’ll turn into a zombie. That was the level of comfort I revived from my friends. But once agin like a knight from the fairy tales my mother came in to pick me up. She shared her own internal battle she had when she was diagnosed with dyslexia as an adult and how it took her a while to realise that despite her considerable learning difficulties she worked extra extra hard to get to her position now. She talked me through how you realise that there are lots of everyday things we do and see as normal others don’t. She made me see that yes I was special but not in a bad way. Yeas my brain functions differently and sometimes it just wants to give up! And yes you are perceived as crazy by others, but you made it this far with just support and guidance from family, friends and some professionals. She showed me that I had achieved considerable things and will continue to do so. She showed me that I was a maker of my own luck due to my hard work ethic (that she 100% instilled in me). She let me know that it was ok to ask for help or take longer on task compared to me co workers. She allowed me to begin to understand that I need to be selfish with my time and resources as I could burn out quicker (although I haven’t listened to that as hey I never burn out right, I just dramatically every 3 to 6 months as I feel suffocated by the amount of work I have to do).
My mum is the reason behind my drive, she kept my big goal of being a teacher always in view, even when I tired to detour into media, philosophy, football coach, female footballer, the list could go on. My mum provided me with a ridiculous amount of internal and external rewards to keep me on track. She helped find strategies to help me though life, she even changed my whole diet to help on top of the projects she always had me doing. I swear I made my mum spend double the amount or even triple the amount most parents spend on one child to keep me occupied. She kept up with my fleeting interests. And most of all made sure I was happy!
Following the revolutionary talk with my mum at 21 and with us both trying to get our heads around the fact that I could get a job anywhere I created my own luck again. The stars aligned and I found out that a job was available at my old Junior school. The school that made me feel safe and loved and accepted had a job available (I found out about this job when interviewing for another school and abruptly left the interview to begin to focus on preparing for the job dreams are made from). I worked hard completing the application form and planning the best interview lesson. For the first time ever I had serval people check my paperwork before I sent it as I wanted it to be perfect. I stayed up way into the early morning on the days leading up t the interview looking at all the different types of questions I could be asked and finding the best way I could answer them with the answers reflecting the type of person I am. I then looked up all of the information I could find on the school (even though I went there and volunteered for years there I didn’t take for granted that I would know it inside out). I then researched the best questions to ask them and used the information I had to make my own questions to show off more of my interest in the school and show off my personality of why I should work for them. Surprisingly or unsurprisingly due to my incredible preparation for the interview I smashed it and was offered the job the next lunch time. Much to the shock of the supporting tutor at my placement. But in he 24 hours of waiting to hear back from the school I was offered another job at my current placement to work the summer term. That week was a lucky week of me and the end of it my mum had her told you so face on telling me that I make the best amount of luck for myself.
My drive though is something I still need to learn how to tap into, my mother can do it for me when I need it. I only seem to be able to do it when I’m hyper focused. In life I can’t remember wanting anything as much as I wanted to be a teacher. Everything else in life has been fleeting interest and not occupied my attention for long. As for short tasks in life. I suppose chasing that feel good feeling is what gets me to complete those menial tasks that or the fact that it could my job in jeopardy (the latter works well especially as I can’t prioritise so if the link has been made to the fact that I’ve put the only project that I’ve followed through on might be in danger I will some how get it done even if it’s at the 11th hour and it might be far from a standard that I perceive as good but it’s done).