Having a Learning Disability has been like learning how to ride a bike. I can remember being young and struggling to learn how to ride a bike. My Learning Disability made it difficult to coordinate the pedals and steering the bike. My parents worked hard to work with me to learn how to ride a bike. I will never forget my dad riding my small bike, demonstrating how to do it. At first I learned how to ride my bike in my yard. Eventually I was able to ride my bike throughout the neighborhood.
The journey of having a Learning Disability has not always been easy. The road was not always smooth and paved. Often the path was rough and full of obstacles. I can remember having a beagle that loved to nip at my ankles when I rode my bike as a puppy. I loved my dog but was often frustrated with her disturbing my ride.
My disability seemed to be the biggest road block that got in the way of everything I wanted to accomplish. I struggled in school to learn and to be accepted by my peers. My parents and teachers did not give up on me. I was provided specialty instruction and strategies to help me learn. The techniques I learned helped me in college and life. The old saying that once you learn how to ride a bike you never forget has been true in some ways. I had to figure out how I learned and what was going to work for me. There are some things that I still struggle with and may not be able to accomplish.
Eventually the journey with having a Learning Disability got easier. I began to learn and was put in a few regular education classes. Despite my progress the road was still difficult when I was young. I often wrecked my bike. I can remembered the pain of falling of my bike and having a scraped knee. Thankfully I had people who helped me up and encouraged me to try again. I didn’t stay laying in the ditch or on the side of the road.
The journey with a Learning Disability has been a unique ride. I am on the same road as other riders, but need a different way to navigate the same path. At times I have seen other riders ride past me or be able to go up hills with such ease. I had to learn that being envious did not help me on my ride. I needed a different way to ride my bike. I would get to where I wanted to go, the ride may be different. Instead of riding my bike up the steep hill, I may I have to get off my bike and push it.
My ride with having a disability is a life long journey. I will always have a disability and will need to adjust the gears on my bike to handle the situation before me. I didn’t chose to ride this course, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything. The rough roads have strengthened my legs and lungs fueling me to whatever the path is.