My name is Charlotte and I'll be seventeen next month. This is my story of dyspraxia.
I was diagnosed with mild dyspraxia when I was about seven. I used to see dyspraxia as my worst enemy. It was permanently there, I could never get rid of it and it was always doing something nasty.
I hated Primary School, especially the final year but senior school was better until year nine, when I started taking exams. I was so stressed out over my SATs and GCSEs because I thought I was going to fail and I really wanted to do well. I didn't do very well in my mock GCSEs but that just motivated me to try harder. I revised really hard and in my final GCSEs I achieved Bs in English language and literature and history and a C in Drama.
I am now at college studying childcare. It was great last year to be doing something I enjoy and to be at the top instead of the bottom. Some of the problems I had when I was younger are gone but they have been replaced by others I have now I am a teenage girl. But I know I am a very lucky person and although dyspraxia still gets me down sometimes I try to be a happy, upbeat person. And dyspraxia can be a good thing. It made me very determined and strong. It made me open minded and upbeat. It made me in touch with my inner child. It made me work hard at school. It was great getting my GCSE results, knowing all my hard work had paid off.
I wasn't a very happy child, I didn't like school and even before the diagnosis of dyspraxia I felt something was wrong with me. Dyspraxia affects my PE, spatial awareness, sense of direction and mathematical skills. I take things people say literally and some people think I'm too sensitive. I also get anxious a lot. I'll suddenly start thinking about wars or death and worry about it for no reason. I can be a little obsessive. I also don't like to be around too many people and hate things like shopping and crossing roads. Sometimes when I go out I feel panicky for no reason.
I often think about what my life would be like without dyspraxia. It would be completely different and I think I'd be a completely different person.
I see myself as having a different mind to other people. I may not be good at some things but I'm great at reading, have a fantastic memory, and am caring and love children. Dyspraxia has taught me to respect and value people for who they are. Things like beauty and intelligence are overrated. All I try to do is be a nice person and work hard. If I didn't have dyspraxia I wouldn't be who I am today.