Coco wrote this speech for a language arts assignment for school. She read two biographies to prepare. This piece was a little slow going – she has been spelling a little more slowly and less fluently for the past couple of weeks. You can watch a little of her working on this piece here –
Her spelling is no less deliberate or accurate than before, just a little slowed down. I think it is just a bump in the road and I have been trying to help her exercise her pointing skills with as many structured RPM lessons as we can fit in. We will also be happy to have time with wonderful professional practitioners in the near future. Coco and I are REALLY looking forward to summer break from school when we can focus our days on skill-building and RPM.
CAN YOU IMAGINE BEING TRAPPED IN A LIFE OF SILENCE? DESTINED FOR A LIFE OF ISOLATION? I KNOW ALL ABOUT THIS AND I FOUND A KINDRED SPIRIT IN HELEN KELLER.
FROM THE FIRST TIME I HEARD ABOUT HELEN KELLER I KNEW AT LAST THAT IT WOULD BE POSSIBLE FOR ME TO BREAK FREE FROM MY PRISON OF SILENCE. SHE WAS AN EXAMPLE OF A PERSON WHO DID THE VERY THING I DREAMED OF DOING. YEARS OF SILENCE ALMOST BROKE MY SPIRIT. BEING VOICELESS CAN MAKE YOU WANT TO GIVE UP ON LIFE. HELEN FOUND A WAY OUT AND I COULD TOO.
HELEN KELLER DID NOT REMEMBER WHAT IT WAS LIKE TO SEE AND HEAR BECAUSE SHE WAS ONLY 19 MONTHS OLD WHEN FEVER LEFT HER DISABLED. SHE ONLY EVER KNEW DARKNESS AND SILENCE. THE DAY ANNIE CAME TO BE HELENS TEACHER IN 1887 WAS THE DAY HELEN WOKE UP FROM HER NIGHTMARE. ANNIE OPENED THE WORLD OF LANGUAGE TO HELEN. BEFORE ANNIE ALL HELEN DID WAS LASH OUT IN FRUSTRATION. I KNOW EXACTLY HOW THAT FEELS. ENTIRELY ALONE AMONG PEOPLE DO THE VOICELESS SUFFER. DAY AFTER DAY BECOMES A LIFE OF MONOTONY AND LONELINESS. ANNIE TAUGHT HELEN TO SPELL WORDS IN HER PALM. SOMA MUKHOPADHYAY AND MY MOM TAUGHT ME TO SPELL WORDS ON A LETTER BOARD. JUST
LIKE ME SHE FACED ACCUSATIONS THAT THE WORDS WERE NOT HER OWN. I INTEND TO PROVE MYSELF JUST LIKE HELEN.
HELEN KELLER MADE IT TO COLLEGE. SHE GRADUATED IN 1904 FROM RADCLIFFE CUM LAUDE WHICH MEANS WITH HONORS IN LATIN. SHE WAS THE FIRST BLIND AND DEAF GRADUATE. PERHAPS I CAN BE THE FIRST NON SPEAKING AUTISTIC TO GRADUATE FROM SOME PRESTIGIOUS UNIVERSITY. A COMMON TRAIT I HAVE IS PERSEVERANCE.
MARK TWAIN FAMOUSLY SAID (quote) THE TWO MOST INTERESTING CHARACTERS OF THE NINETEENTH CENTURY ARE NAPOLEON AND HELEN KELLER (end quote). WELL I AGREE. NOT ONLY DID SHE BREAK DOWN BARRIERS FOR THE DISABLED SHE ALSO FOUGHT TIRELESSLY FOR THE RIGHTS OF WOMEN AND OTHERS. I ALSO STRIVE TO BE AN ACTIVIST FOR EQUALITY AND JUSTICE. WITH HELEN KELLER AS MY GUIDE I CAN DO GREAT THINGS TOO.