My introduction to literacy was one of confusion and struggle. When I entered first grade, I entered as a non-reader. By the second semester of first grade I still was not reading. At this point the teachers informed my parents that I was in danger of being held back if I did not start reading. So out of desperation my mother purchased Hooked on Phonics, a series of cassette tapes with a special method of teaching a child to read. She began working diligently with me in hopes of my being able to learn to read before first grade was over to avoid being held ...
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... was making a part of myself into words as a release for the burdens that were weighing me down.
Literacy has played an important role in my life from the very beginning. Whether it was exploring the world through books as a young boy, communicating with friends, writing poetry in music, in the military, or as a therapeutic outlet, literacy has been crucial for me. It has continued to evolve through different periods in my life. Literacy opened my eyes to the world around me and helped me navigate my way through some of the darker days of my life. Later it provided me with a therapeutic outlet, when it felt like the world around me was crashing down, and during days when I wasn’t sure if I was going make it back home to see my family. Literacy will continue to play an important role in my life and, I hope, continue to manifest itself into something even greater.
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