McKenzie’s Story – In Her Words

In My Own Words

I was diagnosed with Dyslexia when that is not my real disorder. A little less than 50% of the kids tested are wrongly diagnosed with Dyslexia. There is a disorder that isn’t as well-known as others, like Dyslexia or ADHD. It’s not as known but it is still just as important. This disorder is called Ocular Motor Dysfunction. More kids should be tested for this disorder because it can lower self-confidence. It also disables the person to understand what they are reading or copying off the board at school and understand it.

When someone is not doing well in school because of an unknown disorder, it can make them feel stupid. But when a kid who is tested and diagnosed with Dyslexia gets the treatment for it and still doesn’t do well it can make them feel useless. This is the case in over 80 percent of kids in the juvenile system, and over 90% of the people in jail. They think they are stupid and worthless when in reality; they are really smart and talented. Most people have carried that self-hatred around with them since they were kids!

When I was little, I was homeschooled after completing two years of kindergarten. Every day I would go into the kitchen and Mom would try to teach me. Sometimes, days lasted to about 7 in the evening. I remember trying to copy a short sentence from the white board on the wall. I would turn my head from the white board to the paper more than what seemed necessary trying to get the sentence in my head to copy. My mom thought I was just trying to be uncooperative and just not wanting to do the work. This was expected. She didn’t know about my disability, and neither did I. But there were days like this when my mom just didn’t understand.

Ocular motor dysfunction is caused when a baby is born with a loose muscle in their eyes. It makes it more difficult (if not impossible) to process what they are writing. It also makes the person go really slow in both reading and writing. Children should be properly tested for this disorder that they CAN BE FIXED! I was lucky enough to find the right eye doctor. What about you?

- McKenzie
written in 8th grade

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