Literacy Narrative Draft

Everyone has a story when it comes to their first time doing anything.  I can remember riding a bike for the first time, and kicking a soccer ball for the first. But there is one point in my life that I’ll never forget and that’s the first time that I learned to read. Now this story might sound familiar and you might predict that I started in either first grade or even in kindergarten. However unlike everyone else, I didn’t learn to read until the third grade. Now I know what you might think that’s crazy, but it’s the truth. In Catholic school, they encourage teachers to push away the kids who are falling behind and to not give them as much attention as those who are excelling. Unlucky for me I was one of those kids who got pushed aside. There’s one point that I remember so clearly in kindergarten: the whole class would gather around in a circle and spell and read words out loud. I remember being called on once and not being able to read or spell any words. Man, was I embarrassed, I slid my way into a corner and just cried because all of the kids were laughing at me. Now you would think that the teacher would stop the kids and check on the student crying and help them out, but that wasn’t my case. She just kept going on with the lesson and never checked on me.

I somehow managed to finish kindergarten, first grade, and even second grade there. It wasn’t the easiest thing to do but I managed to get along. Third grade was the turning point in my life. It had its ups and downs but in the end it worked out for the best. I ended up switching schools from PMA which is the Catholic school, to Nottingham West which is a public school. It was amazing; everyone was so nice and welcoming, I got the greatest teacher in the school and I made some incredible friends that I still keep in touch with now. I had this teacher her name was Mrs. Fucci, and she was a life-saver. On the first day of class, we had this reading check test, which was a one on one with the teacher and all you had to do was just read a short story. Sounds easy enough, right? Wrong. That was one of the scariest things I’ve ever had to do. I couldn’t read a single word on the paper. I just remember thinking it’s going to be like my old school, and everyone is going to laugh at me. Instead, I was so wrong. She leaded in and just gave me a hug and said, “Kenny we’re going to get you the help you need” that was probably the sweetest thing a teacher has ever said to me.

At this point I was still in third grade and my parents and I met with the disability center at the school and talked about what we were going to do. They put me on an IEP, and to this day, I’m still on it. But every day throughout third grade I would go and a see a reading specialist name Miss. White, who would teach me the basics that I never got at an very early age. I remember there were days that I didn’t want to go to the class but my mom forced me to go, and I remember there were times that I thought people were making fun of me for going to this class. But the thing is no one knew I was there besides my teachers. While I was in the class, I recall times that I would read a book and the teacher would help me through it and I was starting to figure things out. After a couple of months of going to this class, the teacher finally handed me a book and said, “ Kenny I just want you to give it your best shot and try it on your own and see how far you can get”, for me, this was nerve-wracking. I’ve never tried to read a book on my own, but somehow I got the nerve to just try it and see what might happen.

Surprisingly when I got the book and started to read it, the nerves just disappeared and I managed to read the whole book. To this day I still remember the book, It was “Green eggs and Ham” by Dr. Seuss. I also still remember the emotions that came pouring out of my when I finally did it. I starting crying and jumping up and down that I finally read a book on my own for the first time in my life, and that I did it . Later on through school I’ve finished elementary school, middle school, high school and now I’m in college. I’m not going to say things got easy for me, I’ve had to come up with ways of learning that worked for me. Like if I did not know a word I could replace it with others that meant the same. I’ve had to study extremely hard for everything in life. School has definitely been the hardest thing in my, and in middle school everything took a toll for the worse.

I ended up being diagnosed with short term memory, stomach migraines, and anxiety. Now you could be asking what’s a stomach migraine and the simple way of telling you is, picture a normal migraine but put it your stomach. So with those stomach migraines it would cause so much pain in my stomach that I would be sick for weeks at a time. Which then cause me to miss school and then caused me to have anxiety attacks that would keep out of school longer, and I would just miss so much school. In sixth, seventh, and eighth grade I missed over forty days each year. Now that’s a lot of time to be missing school. It got the point that teachers would send me lesson plans through email and I would have to self teach myself. But the thing is I managed to get through it I passed all three of those years with honor roll and I made it high school.

Now with going into high school there was already a lot of pressure going into a new school, getting involved with sports,making good relationships with teachers that you can trust, and just enjoying my time there. Now that already made me pretty nervous. Also knowing the fact that I was sick so much the last couple of years that added a lot more pressure on me because I definitely didn’t want that to happen again. But the surprising thing is I never really got sick in high school. With ending up removing  most of stress. Now at this point of my life I’ve learned to read in the third, I found out that I have short term memory, and I also have anxiety and stomach migraines. At this point in my life you might be thinking is there anything else that can go wrong in his life. Well, you’d be surprised.

At the end of my junior year of high school I get tested like I always do every two years because of my IEP. Yes the math is a little off but remember that I didn’t got my IEP this the third grade. BUt the thing is this year was just a little different. The people at the disability center discovered that I had one more thing wrong with me, and that is that I am dyslexic. Honestly it wasn’t the worse thing ever because for some reason my brother and I was knew that I was, I mean things could have been worse. The only thing that really bugged me about this whole thing was the part that I had to go in and get extra help and go through this program call the WADE. Honestly I hated every second of it but I knew I had to do it. And I was right that was probably one of the best thing in my life. Just being able to go over basic reading and writing skills that I missed at an early age surprised me.

There was so many things that I didn’t know like all of the different sounds a letter could make, or even the basic rules of sounding out words. Don’t get me wrong as a senior in high school, school work and extra work was the last thing that anyone wants to do and I wish that they found this out earlier but they didn’t. I mean it would have been nice being able to get help earlier, but who knows how much I would have cared when I was younger. But the fact of the matter is that I didn’t and like I say, “things happen for reason” and I live by that rule everyday. As you can see my life of education has been nothing but difficult, and I expected nothing less than difficulty. But I honestly can say I’m excited to see what else is held in my future.