I went through most of my schooling absolutely hating reading and writing and anything that involved either one (which is pretty much everything at school) I would do anything to avoid reading. I forgot to bring my books, couldn’t remember where they were, ‘lost’ quite a few. I did well in most areas of school, so most of my teachers just thought I was lazy; which was fine by me. I played up to it because it was better than them thinking I was dumb. It wasn’t until I was in year 11 that my Mum heard about the Alison Lawson Clinic. The description sounded just like me, trouble reading (I just didn’t), awful speller (nothing seemed to work), clumsy (if there was something to trip over, I tripped over it), bad hand-eye coordination (could never quite catch anything) and the list went on. She convinced me to go and get tested. I was exceptionally reluctant, but thought, hey it’s a day off school and it might make her stop bugging me.
It turned out I had dyslexia, which again worked well for me; now I had something to blame my laziness on. Much to my Mum’s disgust I flatly refused to have the treatment. At the time the clinic was in Moss Vale and I pretty much couldn’t be bothered. I didn’t want to have to miss out on stuff at school and just assumed that I was too old for it.
After a lot of persuasion and a little bit of bribery Mum managed to convince me that I should at least give it a shot. So, in very bad humour I started going once a week up to Moss Vale. About half way through the treatment, we were driving home and I suddenly noticed the clouds. They looked like they were sticking out of the sky, like I could actually reach out and grab them. I’d never seen anything like it. I pointed them out to Mum and she looked at me like I was insane, they didn’t look any different to her. Because my depth perception was improving I was finally able to see things in 3D. As soon as I got home I thought I’d test this theory and got out a magic eye book. I’d never been able to do them before and was secretly hoping that I still couldn’t, so that I could tell Mum that in fact nothing had changed and she was wrong. But my hopes were dashed when I saw a unicorn pop out of the page.
I now go to Melbourne Uni and am finishing my Primary Education degree with honors at the end of this year. I’m nowhere near as clumsy as I used to be, I trip over a lot less, and really enjoy playing ball sports, maybe that’s because I can catch now. I love reading (who would have thought?), and I can actually concentrate in lectures because I can follow the PowerPoints. Now that the words and letters stay in the one place, doing all the reading for uni isn’t that bad and it doesn’t take me as long as it would have a few years ago. I used to hate neon lights; it was always a struggle to know what they said, but not any longer. When I’m really tired I do still have a few issues with focusing my eyes, and I can tell they start to go off (I go a bit cross eyed), but the fact that I can even notice that happening is pretty impressive.
Amy July 12, 2015