The Frisbee Flop

07:03 Karen 19 Comments

 This post is my contribution to June's edition of Sian's Storytelling Sunday

Gracia and I are so alike in many ways. I have passed on many of my traits that I am proud of but unfortunately I have also passed on things that are not so good. The main being dyslexia. 

When I was a child this was not recognised as a condition and I was just deemed to be bad at spelling and naughty for not learning my spellings for the Friday spelling test.  I can vividly remember the number of Fridays I feigned illness to try and avoid the humiliation of always coming bottom when I couldn't understand why the words would not stay in my head. 

It is really funny because if you look at my school reports and at Gracia's you could swap the names over and they would read the same. I struggled at school with my inability to spell and, even now if I am under stress and I have to write a word I am unfamiliar with I sometimes don't even know what letter it starts with! But I still managed to get A level English and a 1st in my degree. When I took my P.A. course my shorthand was also all written back to front, in fact I was told by my shorthand teacher to never apply for a job that required shorthand. Now Gracia and I laugh about our inability to spell.

 Another downside of being dyslexic is that we have quite poor coordination - we both frequently trip over our own feet, bump into things as our spacial awareness is poor, I still cannot tell my left from my right and when driving people know to say 'turn my way' or 'turn your way' because if they say right or left, by the time I have decided what they mean I have either passed the turning or turned in the opposite direction to the one they want.  Neither of us has any sense of direction. We often walk away from a meal wearing half of it. Up until a short while ago Gracia still took a spare t-shirt when she went out and recently,when we went for a cooked breakfast before out little jaunt to London, she put her cardigan on back to front over her top so that if she dropped her bake beans it would go on her cardi and not on her top! 

Dyslexia has meant that we really do not have any hand to eye coordination, we cannot play games with fast moving or small objects such as tennis or badminton. Our brains do not compute fast enough to react in time to return a volley or even catch a ball thrown to us. 

So with this in mind, four years ago, when I took Gracia and her best friend Hannah to the beach for the afternoon and they were playing with a Frisbee I asked her how far she thought she could throw the it. She answered with all honesty "About this Far" holding her hands about a foot apart. This was the photo and this is the resulting layout - 

The Frisbee Flop. 

Of course she could have thrown it further but it would have been in completely the wrong direction because letting go of it at the right time requires the kind of coordination that we certainly do not possess!

Reasons to be cheerful: 

1. That we can accept our short falls, overcome them and make the most of what we have.

2. That we are both able to laugh at and accept our inability to eat a meal without spilling it down ourselves.

3. That Eileen reminded me of this story and I was able to put it into words for Storytelling Sunday.



Amy said...

I love your layout Karen!
I had to giggle as you described gracia turning her cardigan inside out - a practical solution for sure!

Thanks for the insight! I never knew that dyslexia was associated with coordination and direction issues as well.

WendyB said...

I too didn't realise that co-ordination was also a challenge so thank you for sharing that. Love the layout too.

My Princess came home from school BEAMING when she realized that PE was not compulsory for 6th formers. Co-ordination is a challenge for her too. Spare t-shirts often come in handy :)

Sian said...

TTO's best friend is dsylexic and he fights hard to play cricket with the others because he loves it so much, so I can see where the frisbee might give rise to a few giggles. Your joint cheerfulness under pressure is isnpirational! (..and your layout is lovely)

debs14 said...

At least you can blame these traits on a medical reason, I share most of them and have no good excuse! I love how you have turned Storytelling Sunday into a layout too.

I love the idea of Gracia putting her cardi on the wrong way round! You could be describing my own daughter and like Missus Wookie's Princess, she will be very grateful when she is no longer subjected to PE at school.

Alison said...

Great LO Karen ..and love the thought of the back-to-front cardi!
Alison xx

scrappyjacky said...

What a wonderful LO....and I quite understand the backwards I'm always dropping food on myself.....particularly when wearing white!!

Chipper said...

What a great story. I have a son like this and he to tries really hard and also sees the humor in it. Great to see such spirit when you are faced with something you can't change :-)

Louise said...

great layout. Co-ordination is a challenge for one of mine!

Jo.C said...

I'm with you on the left and right! I am so uncoordinated! Beautiful page

S said...

Oh thanks for sharing your story and insights on how you both cope. Cute scrapbook page too!

Gail said...

What a great looking layout! As I read your story it made me think of how uncoordinated I am.

furrypig said...

my sister is dyslexic and also struggled at school whereas her daughter and son were diagnosed and able to access help. Lovely layout.

Melissa said...

I love how your reasons to be cheerful sum up your wonderful attitude despite the dyslexia. It makes life so much better when we can laugh at ourselves! Loved the frisbee story.

Cheri said...

Two of my sister's children are dyslexic. It's great that now there are special resources (even special schools) where dyslexic children can be taught skills to compensate for the dyslexia. Thing is, both of these kids are extremely bright. Susanne is phenomenal at drawing and designing (fashion)at age 14 at Jordan loves to "invent" things. I never knew coordination was an issue. Both of these kids took Tai Kwan Do (sp?) and did very well.

It's such a great thing that you can share your dyslexic moments and laugh about them. My younger daughter is dyslexic - the word itself is difficult enough! She too has coordination difficulties that sometimes lead to much hilarity. We look on her dyslexia as something precious; because she is.

Mel said...

I am an English teacher and one of the most clever members of our English department is dyslexic and I would always tell the kids this as an example that you don't have to be smart to be able to spell!