Marianne, Mother of her Dyslexic son Tom who had Learning Problems
While completing my training in learning problems in the US I watched a lot of baseball. Life is like a ball game. To enjoy playing a game, there are many skills that need to be learned. When kids start learning to play baseball, lots of time is spent fielding, throwing, catching, batting, base-running and more. Learning these skills is essential so that kids can get the most possible enjoyment out of the game, and if they do it better than the other team, they win. But for those kids that can’t field a ball or can’t bat a ball, they spend a lot of time on the bench watching everyone else playing, and wishing they could join in.
My son was like that. He spent a lot of time on the bench wondering why he couldn’t field the ball, or in his case – read. As his mother, I felt enormous guilt that I hadn’t nurtured his development properly. I felt hopeless, knowing my son had talent, but not being able to realise it due to his learning problems… then all that changed.
He met a ‘coach’ who took him back to the beginning and started again with learning the skills of ‘fielding’ or in his case – reading. Now, he’s back in the game, laughing, playing, winning and enjoying the experience. In fact, he has the potential to be the best in the team because his coach taught him how to do things in a way he understood.
That’s what has inspired me to become a coach like that, helping not only kids, but adults who have spent their life on the bench, make the most of their talent and get into the game. I’ve seen my son go from loser to winner and I’d like to be able to see that happen in others.
I’m happy to say, that my son completed his HSC in 2010 and achieved an overall score of 88.7% He did end up being the ‘best in the team’ as he was the School Captain in his final year. He is undertaking a double degree at Macquarie University.
I’m even more happy to say that Tom, having finished University, is now working for one of the largest dental firms in the world as the Asia-Pacific Operations Manager.