An identification of dyspraxia on my 35th birthday shouldn’t have been as much of a surprise as it was, in retrospect.
3 failed driving tests, next to no ability to hold 3 new bits of information in my head and a chronic inability to follow a sequence; it’s glaringly obvious now.
The assessing psychologist brought everything into sharp focus for me. Yes, those difficulties that she assessed for had underpinned so many academic, work and even life failures (like being sacked from a cafe when 3 weeks in I still couldn’t remember how to use the coffee machine, or my first go at university screeching to a halt shortly after Freshers’ week).
But I also learned that alongside the slips and trips (literally), dyspraxia has its distinct advantages: Strategic thinking, humour, creativity, artistic expression and appreciation of life’s simple things are part of the package, and these are the parts I want to delve through when I’m exploring this part of who I am.
So, donning my dyspraxia dress, ready to try it out for size, I browsed all the accessories and information that might help me to wear it well.
And I didn’t get far.
The books, literature, information on dyspraxia that inspire me to take ownership of, and really connect with my specific learning difference are few and far between.
I haven’t found an equivalent of the beautiful Aspien Woman crafted by Tania A Marshall for the autistic community, or the Power of Different by Gail Saltz that reframe the clinical, deficit model understanding of other neurodiverse profiles.
So maybe I need to write one. Write the book that I want to read about dyspraxia. And I’m looking for the world dyspraxic community to help me.
My vision is for an imaginative collection of metaphors for how we perceive ourselves and our dyspraxia. You see, to me, dyspraxia is like the love child of Athena and Dionysus (or Minerva and Bacchus, depending on your classical bent). Smart, wise and artistic, but frequently falling over.
For those of us who have a dyspraxic profile, we all have our own imaginative mental models of what it is, what it’s like. What’s yours?
Visit the project page to find out more and link to the submission form.