Let me tell you a story, a story of a boy who have world-class imagination, boundless energy; constantly rock the things that he’s passionate about, and a heart deep full of love and empathy.
At around 5 years old, his parents got complaints from teachers that he could not sit still in class, constantly wandering around and conducting mischiefs with his classmates. Sometimes he will have emotion outburst, there was one occasion where his temper flare and he made a huge dent in his school’s partition wall by kicking on it. He also display impulsivity where he stick a pencil into the air cleaner at his kindergarden and his mom needed to pay the fees for the repair.
Thinking that the school environment was not suited for him, his parents decided to switch him to a stricter disciplinary kindergarden, in hoping that his attitude and behavior would change for the better before he enters Primary 1. Things did not get better, although there were fewer complaints from the teacher, but he started to dislike school. He was verbal bullied due to his emotional breakdown and his sensitivity. At home, his family couldn’t grasp the way he act and hence he got labelled as: Disobedient, Misbehave, Difficult, Disruptive. Exact word from his dad: “He’s just so hard to be Loved.”
Entering Primary 1, homework load piled up, responsibility increased. He started to show challenges in coping with school task, especially Math. Due to his inability to focus, he’d become frustrated and starts crying uncontrollably whenever he’s doing his worksheets. He can never finishes his task, and his mom just can’t quite figure out what’s going on until one day when she sits down and to do the homework with him, after exhausting all sorts of disciplinary methods. Turns out, this boy can’t focus! He was in a daze throughout and constantly lost track of what he was doing just seconds ago. Needless to say, his mom knew that something’s not quite right. Thanks be to God, this boy had an insightful Math tuition teacher who suggest that there’s a possibility that this boy have what’s call ADHD. That was in April 2019.
It’s been a year since we discover that JH have Attention Deficit Hyperactive Delightfulness (ADHD). It was a year of learning – learning to discover our true self, learning to accept differences, learning to embrace shortcomings (& gift) and learning to love unconditionally, both for my husband and myself. And I’m so so thankful for this year, that makes us realised that we can turn disability into superpowers, just like 80-HD, a robot character of Dogman that was created to reflect ADHD.
Dear JH, if you read this, know that we are so proud of you. It’s been difficult, knowing you have to put twice or thrice the effort, in order to conform to society’s expectation. Continue to be who you are, we will do whatever it takes to guide you to do good with your superpower; to use your imagination and make a change in this world, to think differently so you’re able to leave the world a better place. Love you lots.