06 January, 2006

Seeing things upside down

illustration by maya, age 7-ish
I was reminded by something I read today that I am dyslexic. Not that you can forget something like that...but you do push the "label" away...under the bed, in the closet....etc.

I always knew that something wasn't quite right.
Particularly in junior highschool when I decided that I couldn't cope with school and tried to leave (but thanks to a great teacher I didn't).
Being dyslexic is just seeing things a bit different from the majority of the world. When I was tested and given the verdict, nearly a decade ago, I was terrified and relieved at the same time.
Weird combination of feelings.

I was hesitant at first to write this kind of thing here...had to fight a little voice in my head saying "no, its too much embarassing personal information for it to be displayed on a public diary". But I decided to ignore it, hoping that someone that might be as muddled up as I was some years ago might read this.

Dyslexia has been a blessing, although I must admit I didn't think so for a long time.
I wouldn't be able to do the things I do, especially creatively without it, I think.
Not that non-dyslexic artists are not creative, but in my case it pushed me in the right direction- to follow my dreams and see the world upside down, a little twisted at times but eventually pulled into a gorgeous pink - potters pink :) -rose, that I can paint and smile about.

It also has made me into the most stubborn person I know- If someone says something is impossible, i HAVE to do it!!
Maybe thats a teeny tiny little bit of a reason, why I am writing my book.
But dear reader...please don't tell any one I said so. :)


Joanna said...

I'm dyslexic too. Sometimes it gives me a lack of confidence writing which holds me back. I agree it helps you be creative if only I could just paint pictures and not write. I would never of known you are dyslexic from your blog.

Maya said...

Hello Joanna :)
I get muddled up when writing sometimes, especially if I am stressed or very tired, but on the whole I have learned to deal with it using different mechanisms of thought.
I think the major disabillity that dyslexia brings isn't the trouble with words, coordenation etc...its the feeling of being incompetent in things that other people do so easily. SoIn the past I found myself explaining to a stranger that I am dyslexic and thats the reason I have a hard time doing so and so...like I had to apologise for it for some reason.

PG said...

I'd never have known it either, not that I would have thought any less of you for it. I have a similar problem with numbers - sometimes I cannot get my head round the simplist of calculations or counting change, or adding up small numbers - my brain goes blank and they are just meaningless symbols. And the harder I try to get my head round them, the worse it gets. Which is why I was such a disaster in the shop cash office, which they thought I'd be good in ('cos I've got a degree so I must be clever, ha-ha!)
Needless to say I leave doing my tax return until the very last week.
Anyway, I am looking forward to seeing this book...I think it's going to be wonderful!

tlc illustration said...

There are things that I get switched around on as well (especially if I'm tired). I frequently blank out on 'right' vs. 'left' - which I just read happens many times when one's brain hemispheres... are something (I've been reading lots of these 'Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain' kinds of things for this class I'm teaching)... I can't remember the specifics now of the brain functioning, but I sure fit the description...

Doesn't it seem that most of the creative people one knows think 'differently'...? Maybe it comes with the territory.