Never Allow Anyone To Tell You What You Are Not Capable Of

Dedication: Those Kids and Adults With Disabilities

Being dyslexic was a struggle for me growing up as a kid but I got through it by going to a school for kids with special needs, taking speech therapy classes, and learning different techniques in which helped me learn. Living in a home with brothers that were very mean to me I was always told what I couldn’t do instead of them trying to help me and make things better for me they just made me feel more like I was handicap. I always felt as if I was “dumb” a word that I no longer use in my vocabulary. All these experiences made me into who I am today.

At the age of 5 years old I started going to a special school for kids with special needs called People of Appraisal. In the beginning, it helped because it got me out of the house, I was around other kids that were in a similar position as I was, and it helped me with my communication skills with others. This school was supposed to help but it started to make me feel like I couldn’t learn. Most of the kids in the school couldn’t walk, talk, or even feed themselves. I can remember thinking to myself that I wasn’t like the other kids. I began to work very hard to be able to get placed in a normal school. After going to this school for two years I was tested and I scored on a reading and writing level of a 1st-grade student and I was then placed in the 1st grade.

At the age of 7, I was placed in the 1st grade at Creswell Elementary in Opelousas Louisiana where I began speech therapy to help me with my reading and writing. That very same year I became an exceptional student and my life began to change for the better. At the end of the year I received so many awards I appeared on the news for my accomplishments. This class not only helped me with my reading and writing but also helped me with my interactions with others. This was only the beginning of a very long struggle with dyslexia. I continued taking the speech therapy classes up until the 7th grade. After the speech classed ended I had to learn without the guidance of my speech therapy teacher which became a struggle for me.

My middle school years were hard but I managed to get through them by barely passing. There I am again struggling and I started to believe all that I was told in the past like I couldn’t, I wouldn’t, and I shouldn’t. Being without guidance I began to struggle with all kinds of issues. I felt as if I wasn’t good enough and then came to that word again “dummy” in which I thought I would never feel or hear again. I was forced by the school to get back on the right path again because I was told that I would be placed in a special class for kids with special needs which we called “Special Ed”. This was somewhere I didn’t want to be so I began to take learning classes after school to help me with my class assignments, my reading, and writing. From then on I begin to have faith in myself again and my grades and attitude began to change. From then on I never let my disabilities define who I am.
Now here I am a 37-year-old college freshman and an honor student. Now I do believe in myself and I know that I will succeed in anything I do if I at least try. I’ve learned that patience goes a long way. Today I’m not afraid to ask questions if I don’t understand and that doesn’t mean I’m dumb it means that I do have a disability and I may need to get a little bit more information than others to understand. Yet I still don’t allow any of my disabilities to define who I am and what I’m capable of.

The moral of my story is to never lose faith in yourself or let anyone put you in a box and tell you what you a capable of. You will never know what you are capable of if you don’t try. I never see anything in my life as a failure I see them as learning experiences to better myself. Every time that little thought pops up in my head about giving up on anything. I simply remember all my struggles throughout my life that I got through and how strong I am today. That’s all the hope I need to get through anything in life.

Story shared by...

R Deja Cain

Im a 37 -year- old transgender woman who lives in Lafayette, Louisiana