The following adult had received one year of Barton tutoring when she wrote this letter to Oprah (with the help of her tutor) to try to convince Oprah to do a show on dyslexia.
I am 76 years old today.
I spent the first 75 years of my life wondering why I could not read or spell as well as other friends and family. I didn’t know why I had such a hard time finding the right word when I spoke, or why I couldn’t say the words correctly when I could retrieve them.
I didn’t know why I so often got lost in cities I had lived in for years, or why I still had to stop and think for a moment before I knew my right from my left. I didn’t know why I had such trouble memorizing things that seemed so easy for others.
Or why someone like me – someone who has started and run two businesses – could still not read well, or spell correctly enough to take a message and then be able to read it afterwards.
I didn’t know that I had severe-to-profound dyslexia.
For 75 years I prayed for God to help me. Last fall, I prayed again – that God would please, PLEASE, send me someone who could teach me how to spell.
The very next day, I ‘just so happened’ to sit next to a Dyslexia Specialist at a local event, and we ‘just so happened’ to strike up a conversation about what she does for a living. She ‘just so happened’ to tell me about the signs and symptoms of dyslexia, and I immediately recognized them in me.
Best of all, she ‘just so happened’ to tell me that there are solutions! That people who have struggled with dyslexia, for even 75 years, could still learn to read, write and spell! I made an appointment for her to test me. I cried when she told me that I had dyslexia. They were not tears of sadness, however. They were happy tears! Tears of joy! I finally had an answer!
I have been receiving the right kind of tutoring, twice a week, for a year.
I read the word authentic for the first time last month. I can now spell words that I could not even say before. I am 75 years old. Believe me – there is hope.
I have been thinking back on my 75 years. I thought of the very worst time in my life – the time when my daughter died.
Then I thought of the very best time in my life – it was the time I realized I could learn how to spell! When I finally, finally, realized what my life’s problem was. I am dyslexic.