It has been 195 days, 4632 hours since I last published something on this blog and even then, that was just a poem. It has been nearly a year since I last posted something worth reading—any accurate reflection of how I feel. There isn’t any real reason for my absence. A lack of motivation or inspiration in my day to day life has lead me to push this hobby to one side and any time I have gotten off my arse and actually done something with my day, I’ve chosen to cherish it rather than document it. That being said, I have desperately tried to publish posts. My little drafts folder is littered with snippets of different topics including a lengthy post about hiking up Helvellyn (one of England’s tallest mountains) but I know that if my heart isn’t in the post then there is no point posting it.
I’ve been handling this blog for 4.5years, and I have achieved what I set out to do (I believe), which was to get better at writing. I know that may sound ridiculous, but I am an insecure person, and my literacy ability plus dyslexia is something that bothers me. Dyslexia more so. I hate it. I hate that it hinders my brain in more ways than I realise. I hate that I was diagnosed so late into my education (At uni) that, to me, the damage had already been done. I had already learnt ways around it; most are unhelpful, but being in your 20s and at uni meant there was very little support. Sure I got extra time for my exams, but after that initial diagnosis, I was never given any tips on managing it. No one sat me down and said, “Oh, you know how you stutter sometimes? Well, that’s a sign of Dyslexia.” or “Hey, your inability to retain information is connected to your Dyslexia, but this is how you can help it”.
When I received my report stating that I had dyslexia, it said that moving around a lot in my youth could have triggered it and most likely meant that it got missed. This… This bothers me so much. Because my parents (mainly Dad) had an issue with staying put and believed that the grass was green on the other side, I ended up going to 5 different schools. There were five different styles of education. Five different English and maths classes… It’s three too many. I did not benefit from their itchy fit, merely hindered. If we had stayed put, there is a chance my life could have been very different, and perhaps I would be more academic.
Sadly, however, this is nothing more than a theory, and until time travel is invented (not by me. for the reasons stated above), this is the life I lead.
I’m aware that I’m just ranting now.
I am someone who likes to learn. I love new skills and being able to do new things, and most of the time, I’m pretty good at it. I am a practical learner. You only need to show me how to do something once, and I’ll do it. In early 2021, I learned to knit. Hats, rabbits. Even a cardigan. I also learnt the basics of the piano just by messing around until I worked out which notes sounded better together. The area I struggle with most is reading and retaining information. It frustrates me. I can read something pretty well but ask me what I just read, and I wouldn’t be able to tell you. I also find it incredibly tiring. My partner is a teacher, so we have plenty of GCSE textbooks filling our bookshelves. This is perfect for me. Simple academia that only tells me what I need to know. Fantastic. But I can not emphasise enough the amount of focus I must consciously put in. I find it so hard. The willingness and materials are there, but my brain won’t engage. And that’s what it is like manning this blog. It’s why I have many incomplete pieces.
I am insecure. I know this. I am aware of this. But I think my academic ability is my biggest insecurity. I have an irrational fear that my intellectual ability reflects my working-class upbringing. If I quote the wrong phrase or misuse the wrong word, people will judge me as someone pretending to be academic (I said it was irrational).
I have a degree. It is a 3rd class degree that I achieved through the skin of my teeth and isn’t necessary for my job. In my department, there are but a handful of us with ODP degrees rather than the more typical ODP diploma (Which was offered at our local university until this year, where it became a degree) and a lot of people (jokingly) tease me about this. I am not proud of my degree. I am proud of the fact I went to uni. I got into that position, out of a council estate and into a well-paid job that I am incredibly proud of. But my degree? My 3rd class degree which means I am not eligible to do a masters because my grade is so poor? I’m not proud of that. I hate it when it is mentioned at work. I only mention it when people asked me where I trained because the course style is very different to the ODP diploma. I will tell anyone in my industry that you do not need a degree to be an ODP, it is utterly useless. I got in to my uni through ‘Clearing’ (A special time in august where university’s offer up any spare places with lowered entry requirements). I only got into my uni because they had been given additional funding as this was the first year they were offering the ODP degree rather than a diploma. And I admit, I didn’t know what an ODP was. I wanted to be a midwife, then a nurse then anything when I realised my grades weren’t going to be good enough. I’m glad Huddersfield University accepted me because I love my job. Its practical, so I’m in my element.
I digress. This turned into a random rant about Dyslexia. Please be aware that this post only reflects my experiences as a dyslexic, and dyslexia affects everyone differently.
This is what I want this blog to be. Pure, honest thoughts that I can look back to—my creative space. I already look at my older posts and love seeing how far I’ve come, how much I have grown. Sometimes I wish I could just be less critical and more free but at 29 years old, I think I’m set in my ways. Summer is here, Covid is going… It’s time to feel alive again. It’s time I started living again.
I will find my groove again. It will take some time but I will come back.