Steppingstones

Describe a challenge you have faced in your life and how you turned it into something positive.


Hyperlexia. This is a term that very few people have heard of, but it is a term that I have become intimately acquainted with. Though it is shrouded in mystery, I have grown to know it frighteningly well, better than anything on this earth. I know it as I know every part of myself - because hyperlexia is a part of myself.

Hyperlexia, by definition, is a communications disorder in which a young child appears to learn his or her native language as if it were a second language. The child copies large chunks of phrases heard, but he or she does not understand their meaning and does not learn to use them for him or herself. In addition, these children have significant problems with social development and may miss social cues and conventions that many take for granted. Because of this, hyperlexic children are often labeled as "weird," "nerdy," or "aloof." Generally, hyperlexic children also suffer from miscellaneous physical problems, such as sensory integration dysfunction, allergies (usually to antibiotics, wheat protein, and/or milk protein), or low muscle tone. With speech, occupational, and/or physical therapy, however, these symptoms may improve to the point that only a trained eye could identify...

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