This bear has dyslexia. Yes, I am dyslexic. Some of my readers might have already suspected that my lack of grammar is a bit intriguing. Sometimes my spelling is so “unique” that other people with similar spelling issues find their way to my blog. I love those google searches.
I wrote and illustrated a children’s book (not published) called Claire the Bear about a bear that could not spell her own name but finds solace and confidence in art and science class. It is pretty autobiographical.
Having a learning disability has had a big influence over me as an artist, thinker and advocate. I did not read my first book until I was 14 but I have always been a great communicator and have a high IQ. Funny that I have to state this but as a kid my English and math test results where always below average. Way below average and I struggled with issues of self confidence and feeling “stupid”. Being told by a system that you are not smart enough has made me question everything. I was a special Ed kid but I was blessed to have a series of teachers who gave me confidence and respected my intellect even though I had trouble spelling my last name.
I do not view dyslexia as a disability. It is a disability for young children in a society that stresses sitting in a seat and taking test but we have never been a society where all children sat in seats. We were once a rural people where people worked the fields and were in tune with natural world where visual observations where essential to survival.
I think in pictures and visual forms and concepts. I can do complex math problems in my head if I see them has forms and shapes not numbers—I can calculate how much my groceries will before the register does but I find writing a check stressful if someone is looking at me.
I see there for I am.