Sunday, February 21, 2010

Am I to be Blamed...Can't Read but I do Understand

               One day my English teacher called me to read aloud the textbook. When I told her, "No mam, thank you," she came annoyed and blushed. She thought I was acting smart, and told me so. I kept calm, and that got her upset and very much upset. We must have spent ten minutes trying to solve the problem, and finally she got so red in the face I thought she'd blow up. She told me, "I should see you after class, Miel".
Maybe someone like me was a new thing for that teacher. But she wasn't new to me. I've been through scenes like that all my life. You see, even though I'm eighteen and senior high school, I can't read because I have dyslexia. I remember when I was in grade four I was told to read but I was given books to read and leave in the corner, they thought I was reading then, but I am not. Unless you sit with me and guide me I can read but without anyone guide me it takes me sometime to read even a single word or phrase.
             My family began to suspect I was having problems almost from the first day I started school. My father says my early years in school were the worst years of his life. They weren't so good for me, either. As I look back on it now, I can't find the words to express how bad it really was, I wanted to die. I'd come home from school screaming, "I'm dumb. I wish I were dead!"
             I guess I couldn't read anything at all then- not even my own name- and they tell me I didn't talk as good as other kids. But what I remember about those days, is that I couldn't swim, and I wouldn't learn to ride a bike, because no matter what anyone told me, I knew I'd fail.
             Sometimes my teachers would try to be encouraging. When I couldn't read the words on the board they'd say, "Come on, Miel, you know dumb was how the kids treated me. They'd make fun of me every chance they got, asking me to spell my name, my four letters name or something like that. Even if I knew how to spell it, I wouldn't; they'd only give me another word. Anyway, it was awful.because more than anything I wanted friends. On my birthday when I blew out the candles I didn't wish I could learn to read; what I wished for was that the kids would like me.
             With the bad reports coming from school, and with the meaning about wanting to die and how everybody hated me, my parents began looking for help. That's when the testing started. The school tested me; the child-guidance center tested me; private psychiatrists tested me.Everybody knew something was wrong-especially me.
             It didn't help much when they stuck a fancy name onto it. I couldn't pronounce it then; I was only in second grade- and I was ashamed to talk about it. Now it rolls off my tongue, because I've been living with it for a lot of years-dyslexia.
             All through elementary grade it wasn't easy. I was always having to do things that were "different," things the other kids didn't have to do. I had to go to a child psychiatrist, for instance.
One summer my family forced me to go to a center for children with reading problems. I hated and afraid the idea, but center training turned out pretty good, and I had a good time. I met a lot of kids who couldn't read and somehow that helped. The principal of the center said I had a higher I.Q. than 90% of the population. I didn't believe him.
            About the worst thing I had to do in fifth and sixth grade was to go to special education class in another school in our place. A school bus picked me up, and I didn't like that at all. The bus also picked up emotionally disturbed kids and retarded kids. It was like going to school for the retarded. I always worried that someone I knew would see me on that bus. It was a relief to go to the regular senior high school.
Life began to change a little for me then, because I began to feel good about myself. I found the teachers cared; they had meetings about me and I worked harder for them for a while. I began to work on the paper art, draw a painting that the teachers said were pretty good. Also, I got an invitation letter for the debating team. I could speak well without fear and very much confidence with fluency and bright ideas.
                At high school the teachers are good and everyone is trying to help me. I've gotten honors in some marking periods and I've won a letter on the cross-country team. Next quarter I think the school might hold a show of my instance, every time there is writing in the class,I get up and go to the special education room. Kids ask me where I go all the time. Sometimes I say, "to Outerspace."
                Homework is a real problem. During free periods in school I go to  the special room and staff members read assignments to me. When I get home my mother reads to me. Sometimes she reads an assignment into a tape recorder, and then I go to my room and listen to it. If we have a novel or something like that to read she reads it out loud to me. Then I sit down with her and we do the assignment. She'll write, while I talk my answers to her. Lately I've taken to dictating into a tape recorder, and then someone-my father, a private tutor, or my mother-encoded what I've dictated. Whatever homework I do takes someone else's time, too. That makes me feel bad.
                We had a big meeting in school the other day- ten of us, five from the guidance department, my private tutor, my parents, and me. The subject was me. I said I wanted to go to college, and they told about colleges that have facilities and staff to handle people like me. That's nice to hear.
                As for what happens after college, I don't know and I'm worried about that. How can I make a living if I can't read? Who will hire me? How will I fill  up the application form? The only thing that gives me any courage is the fact that I've learned about well-known people who couldn't read or had other problems and still made it. Like Albert Einstein, who didn't talk until he was four and flunked math.Like Leonardo da Vinci, who everyone seems to think had dyslexia.
               I've told this story to my favorite one, who always there when I needed her most. Who always do all my unfinished task, who have no fear and worries about my shortcomings. Who always ease my pain, my worries and tension. She who next to my mom who I love her most. She is the only person who understand me. And I told her to write this for me. I want the whole world to know that I am still pushing myself to read and excel in reading.I've told this story because maybe some teacher will read it and go easy on a student in the classroom who was what I've got. Or maybe some parent will stop nagging their child, and stop calling him lazy and dumb. I remember, when I was in my grandmother's house because my mom was so busy in her work and my dad too. When I can't read she pinch me and get her long stick and stabbed me anywhere she likes and telling me, "your lazy, dumb and Idiot!"I am not lazy or dumb and not even idiot, I am sick and needs help.
               I cherished the moment when I am with Yaassmeen, Thanks to God He send me a person like her as my private tutor, my angel!, I rather say. She who encourage me to be brave and not to be lazy. She is the only person I entrust my story. Never told a child that she or he is lazy or dumb. Maybe he's not lazy or dumb. Maybe he or she can't read and doesn't know what's wrong, maybe he or she's scared, like I was. Maybe... when you're reading this... I am with Him and I know I've done my very best, proving myself that at least I try to excel in reading. When I received the award during the recognition, "best in reading", I was very happy then. I know even I leave in this world I prove to myself and to my parents that I am no longer scared, that I can beat anyone. I have so many dreams to fulfill but life for me is too short. I was diagnosed for brain cancer and any moment my eyes will closed but with her, with Yaassmeen.. I want to tell the whole world... no kids is lazy and dumb.
                Fear and worries that is the reason why sometimes were silent.But this time, I am not scared, I am brave to face my destiny. I hope and pray in the next world life for me is no longer painful. I wish to continue what I have started now that I know I can read but we cannot stop what would be our fate. For one last word, I thank all the people who save and challenge me. Am I to be blamed? maybe not but I prove to myself I can do the task. It is just a matter of belief and confidence.And to the most, to Him who always open to hear and listens to our problems, our God.- mahaliahscent

 

                                              

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Flash of Light...


                         Once I came upon a soul weeping silently by the edge of a whirlwind site. It pained me keenly to see a thing so sad, and so I went up to him and touched him lightly on his broken little wings. He seemed surprised, and when he looked at me, I saw his eyes with a light in him strangely familiar.
                         "Did I disturb you, friend?" I asked.
                         "No, but you touched me when I am weak, alone and lonely."
                         "And why is it your weak, alone and lonely?"
                         "I am looking for a true friend, I came from no where, too far from you, but I came for you fear and bravely, and the strong wind buffered me, and my struggles went off just to see and  near with you.
"And why did you fly so far and bravely, friend?"
                          "I was following the light. I want to be near with you, feel you and touch you. Then suddenly a flare got into my left eye, then to my right eye, and I could not see. All was is darkness, wishing you were here to guide me, accept me though its painful and sorrow acceptance of truth kills me. I cant deny I am lost in the dark. How I wish to see the light, the gleam and you is my life my light and my strength. But my soul search you with all trials and darkness. I beat the void more mightily than before. In my heart was no longer the memory of the gleam, but rebellion against the darkness in my eyes."
                          "And what then did you do?"
                          "I vowed vengeance against the void and the darkness, and I forgot the Gleam. Then I flew into a storm that mocked the daring of my strong belief, of my eagerness to fight and hurled me down beside this whirlwind site. I was looking into the mirror of the site, for now I can see but the light is gone , something  has passed away from me.
                          "Not forever, friend," I assured him, "for there are new friends here, new friends to look after you and guide you. With me, you can follow the light, the path you've been looking for.
                           If you will come with me. I will take you to them where they cure the sick on the steps of the temple. The golden mosque where you can be at peace. No worries, no pain, no struggle. but there you will find peace and happiness. Fulfillment of ones desires, just accept Him. The greatest God , Allah.
                          "I will come with you because I trust you, because you are so kind, " and in scarcely audible whisper, "because I am your own soul."
                          "Then I knew why his eyes had looked so strangely familiar to me. And down the road we walked together, my soul, and I towards the temple whose tall spires gleamed silver bright in the rays of the setting sun.
                          "Yes, I am with you... and no doubt to go with you. With your strength and my belief... we will blessed by our faith  and love. Happiness is  not only here in this world but in paradise too.We should be thankful and praise Him and treasure His love.For  with all our hearts only Him is our savior and our protector.

Somewhere….take my hand in time



                      Zheshkah Lal had grown- in small way-great; and by our sights she had prospered. Her husband was slim and frail and afraid of her. The people in the village pitied her for she had been working so hard for the family. She had to wake up early and prepare everything for her family before she went to work. Her father was the one who encourage her to marry to a man she never been her boyfriend. They had a child, a girl and a boy. There seemed to be a complete family of four. She loved her children so much. That’s why she works very hard. But that is not the issue; she had to work not only for her children but for her husband too who is frail and sickly.
                    Sarah Mashey was a thin petite woman who lived a little beyond Zheshkah on the same road. She lived in a small room condo with her husband and four children. In this stumbling steps that day; she climbed the stairs to Zheshkah’s little office and turned the knob to the office door.
                  Zheshkah said angrily, “Come in! Do you want me to get upset with you? This time what is your business with me?”zheshkah asked Sarah. Sarah shuffled in and closed the door behind her. How are you, Ms. Lal ! Zheshkah said, “What’s your business? You had a lot of things to settle this time.”Sarah nodded. “Yeah, I know, Ms. Lal. But I can settle that all.”
                Lal exclaimed impatiently. “An old story! How will you escape from what you have been through? Everyone knows what is going through, you cannot hide yourself. You need to decide now or maybe you will not be out of the cage you’ve been through all this years. I was about to speak when we heard a tip toe of shoes few meters from the stairs, maybe that’s him. You go back there I don’t want him to see me talking to you. Sarah took a piece of bread she saw in the dining table and sip a little of coffee, she seems very hungry. “He didn’t feed you at all? Alright, take the slices of bread and take some sweet potatoes too. “Sarah nodded and say, “thank you!” She hurriedly runs to her unit and after a while silence was break by a horrible shout of a familiar voice from his monster husband. Why we called him monster? Everyone in the village knows what he is doing to his family. Sarah just doesn’t fight with him for she is afraid with him and because of her children too. She wants complete family and she will sacrifice for her children. I heard how Sarah painfully screaming with pain saying “Please stop, it hurts, the children they will be affected, don’t do this please!”Screaming of pain and tears of children saying… “Stop it papa! Stop it!”I don’t know how it took me sometimes listening and tears of pain feel in to my nerves. Then for a while silence again… I heard no noise but empty cries of Sarah and kids. I peeped in the window and saw him going out with huge bag on his back. I hurriedly came in to the house and I saw my friend Sarah was bleeding, I couldn’t imagine how she suffers this much, for so many years of silence, pretending to be happy, to just save marriage for what? I held her hand and she hold my hands trying to talk but no sounds came out from her bleeding mouth.”Zsssssh, Calm down I’m here for you I’ll take you to the hospital.”I glance once again to her children, the eldest keep busy fixing the broken chairs, second is also sweeping the floor of broken glasses scattered on the floor and the baby twins crying in the crib, an innocent look of reality that brought by misery. I want to cry and clinched my fist, how cruel he is. He is so unfair! He must be punished, a man like him should not be loved. Why Sarah? 


She had been a good wife, a working mother, she work a lot for her family...Why life is so unfair to her. "Hematoma, and she needs surgery, for her CT scan results  of brain damage. She needs surgery at once,” doctor says, a minute from now. Sarah has no family except his strange husband and the kids and I consider her as my family, so I decided to  sign the consent for her surgery to save her life. I don’t know how many hours I spent my time in the chapel, looking for his face asking him once again to give Sarah a chance to live even in this world ,...life for her is so unfair but because of her children, she needed most by her children. “Please, Lord God let her live!” It was almost 2:00 o’clock in the morning when the nurse wake me up." She is now in the ICU, operation was successful", nurse said. I thank God he heard my prayers. I rush into her room and saw her,  tears from my eyes seemingly feel the pain from her swollen face."There will be tomorrow for you my friend, I know God is powerful he will save you and your children".
                After that incident, I heard Sarah went to the province with her kids and we don’t have any news from her except that she work abroad and no news from him too. Ten years had past and I am preparing myself to work when my eldest daughter caught my attention. “Mommy, look at the window! A limousine car park outside, do you expect some visitors?” Lucky said. “No, I said. I don’t have a rich friend maybe that is our neighbor’s visitor.”I went out to see who is there, and with all my surprise... It’s her, Sarah is that you? That face is so familiar to me; you look good and so beautiful. We talk a lot and I am so happy with her. All her children are big now, two of them are now working in the office and the twins are in college now. They all move in Colorado and no news from him, and I didn’t ask her about him. I know she is now free and her freedom brings her success for her and for her children. Tears of joy from her beautiful face, she again hold my hand hug me and say, “Thank you my friend, you never leave me when I needed you most”. I can’t see her car anymore but I am still waiving, I can’t believe it will come true. I held my head up in the sky and offer prayer. Thank you Lord God you save my friend, Thank you for keeping her with you and her children too.
            “Mommy, it’s getting late now. Were going or not?” Yes lucky let’s go. I again look at my watch and took my bag and it’s getting late now. I also work too much for my family but at least my husband afraid of me and never hurt me at all. Because he loves me so much, we help one another for our future.  I go back to the house and give my husband Bill a kiss and bade him goodbye.” take care Janie, I’ll see you tonight. Common, lucky let’s go!


Friday, February 19, 2010

CwC.wakeboard

                         Zheshkah Lal closed her eyes as Bill Khan pulled her into his arms for a long passionate kiss. The nighttime sounds of the forest surrounded them, and a soft, pine-scented breeze ruffled through Zheshka's long black hair.
                         "I wish this night could go on forever," Bill whispered, leaving back against the side of the old dilapidated house.
                           Zheshkah sighed and rested her head on his shoulder. She and Bill had just returned from a romantic midnight Jetzy ride on CwC.wake board. An infinite number of stars twinkled in the sky, and a bright crescent moon cart a shimmering silver glow over the sea. It was as if they were in their own special, magical world. Being with Bill seemed so right.
                          But it's not right, a small voice inside her said. Hundreds of miles away, at a training camp Los Angeles, her longtime boyfriend, Corey Partrigde,  believed she was being faithful.Zheshkah wrapped her arms more tightly around Bill's strong back and pushed aside the thought.
                          "Now that were together again, I never want to let you go." Bill whispered.
                          "I know, " She murmured. The past few days have been horrible, seeing you and Irene Galicia together,,,, Who is she?"
                           Bill stopped her words with a soft kiss." A new beginning. Zheshkah, from this moment on Let's agree to start over and make most of the time we have."
                           She gazed longly into his brown gray eyes and nodded. "I rene Galicia Ferrer, I dont even know her. I just saw her name card when i check your wallet, maybe one of your client, a friend... I dont know?" But friend's say they saw you with her sometimes, Bill and Irene going out together. "Hey! a pity thoughts again?", Bill asked, "You jealous?, " "No, just thinking something maybe I was wrong.I trust you, and that trust will always remain, but I will listen to you what ever you say and I smile and hug him. I will never give you up and want to live with you forever. I wont leave you Bill," as I whispered him.
                           "You're so special too," Bill whispered as he ran his fingers through her long black hair. Now, seeing the look of admiration in his eyes, she was glad she hadn't.
                            "At first, spending a month with you, or maybe years with you... but wish it would be lifetime... forever my Zheshkah". Seems we both busy but you have all the time to look after me. I wont be like this if not because of you. Your patience , understanding and love makes my world go round.I feel my importance if I am with you.I am a performing arts and you a busy computer engineer. We don't have the same interests, not the same lifestyles.. but you never give up. you always there to support me and never failed me. Aren't you not tired of me?" Why, am I tired and boring to you? Bill asked. Hmmmmm ...again stupid questions you always like that.. asking me the same questions again and again."
                             "Are you cold?" Bill asked softly. His warm breath tickled Zheshkah's ear.
                             Zheshkah pushed Irene out of her mind." What would you do for me if I was?" She challenged in a flirtatious tone," Bill cocked her head, as if thinking it over carefully, " I'd give you the shirt off my back."
                             Zheshkah laughed softly running her lips softly against his," you're to kind," she teased.
                             He looked down at his dark black university sweatshirt, you're right."
                             She laughed and showed him playfully.
                             "Alright, it's yours," he said. "No, really, Bill, I'm fine, "she protested."
                              " Your arms are covered with goose bumps", he said, slipping his shirt over her head.
                             "It was too big". she said, laughing, " But it's so nice and warm. You may never get it back." she told her playfully as she rolled up the sleeves to her wrists.
                             He cupped her chin in his hands. "I'm sure you can have or many sweatshirts if you want, but mine is one of a kind."
                            Zheshkah felt a rush of pleasure. She knew he was referring to more than just her looks. After all, her looks weren't unique at all, but she seems so very special to Bill. I hope and always hope he would remain the same and wont look for another Irene or any other woman except me. "What about Irene?" I asked. Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha... she is nothing, just my friend interest.. not for me of course but for my friend. He held my hand and said, "no one except you in my life in this world and even in paradise we will be together, you and me only... only you my Zheshkah."
                            "You know, "you're a great actress sometimes but like I said, you're one of a kind."
"Hmmmmm. how many more minutes it takes for you to finish your paper works? Would you like to rest now? It's nearly midnight and Bill said, stop what you doin right now.stop writing. We didn't go in CwC wakeboard just writing and finish your work! We came here to relax and we need to rest now!  just continue your work tomorrow , alright!." Bill slipped his finger on my hair and give me a kiss, we sleep now Jani." Bill said.
                           "I stop my work  and we went to bed.


                                   
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