As soon as they found out in school I was really behind the school I went to was awesome and helped me with extra help and I went to the READS SOCIETY which is a place where you can get extra help with English and Math. In two years I pulled up all my grades enough to be able to graduate with my friends. I always thought I was Dumb because I Constantly heard I was dumb or stupid or I would never amount to anything. What we all realized was my Brain was never challenged so I needed to almost wake it up. I also found out I was dyslexic so things people saw one way I see them the opposite way. Over all the years I had to figure how to do things differently. I did find recently at school I was stumped on something my teacher asked me to help the children with. I could not do it and now instead of feeling stupid or dumb I just told her that with dyslexia I couldn’t figure it out. She was very gracious and showed me how it worked and then I understood.
Learning disabilities are nothing to be ashamed of and now working at school I understand a lot of what children go through. If you don’t have that support it’s the most frustrating thing ever. I acted out because nobody ever helped me until I came to Canada. I realized I loved learning and that I was smart. Boy does that every make your self esteem soar. I also can reconize trauma in children and know how to help them. Being there myself I reconize the signs. Trust is the biggest thing gaining it. I often see anger and even though the child really wants to be close they push you away before you could do that to them even if you never did that.
I was so awkward as a teenager and because things were so different for me culturally. It was like I had come from another planet and was plonked here. As you’ve heard me say before it didn’t seem to matter what had happened to me. I was expected to just pick up and carry on in a new country. How do you do that? I became withdrawn as I felt overwhelmed so much and I left my only life. How do you fit in society and I hated it. The kids at school made fun of me all the time and there was one guy who was like the ring leader and he teased me mercilessly.
In Grade 11 one of the expectations was we went on a camping canoeing trip. I had never even been canoeing let alone out camping with other kids. It was one of the hardest things I did I’m not even sure I saw much of anything on the trip. The adults camped on the other side of us and this guy and his friends picked on me so much and everybody laughed. He thought it was funny to zip me in my sleeping bag and not let me out. After the trip the picking on me became unbearable a whole new level. I started skipping school and I had an amazing counsellor at school who I remember brought me into his office to ask me why I was missing so much school. I told him I hated school and didn’t want to rat out the guys that were picking on me so much. Mr. Lundeen he knew something was wrong and when I finally told him. He was livid he jumped up out of his chair and told me to stay where I was. He called that boy into his office along with the principal and told this guy if he ever made fun of me or any of his friends he would make sure charges would be pressed on him for sexual harassment.
I had no idea what’s what they were doing because nobody ever stuck up for me like that. He often checked on me and those guys never bothered me again in fact some of them Became quite protected of me. The nice thing about even back then there is zero tolerance here in schools for bullying. I love that because it protects us who are vulnerable. I can spot children that are being bullyed out on the playground. You can tell how they feel and their faces. I’m a huge advocate for those children because you feel so helpless. Children can be so cruel.
I did indeed graduate with my class which was good and I passed all my classes except for my English 12 but I was able to do it in College so that I could later enroll in my Early Childhood Education program.