Friday, August 21, 2015

Can you repeat that?

I have read that some gifted kids are ultra-sensitive to sensory stimuli. As my dad used to say, "I am on sensory overload." It seems like almost every sensory input is magnified, and once the circuits are overloaded, additional input is unbearable.

Visual images incite emotional reaction disproportionate to the intended impact. Furthermore, once the visual image has been internalized, it is never forgotten. Visually stimulating images are available for immediate retrieval in the most inopportune moments.
Fluorescent lights and abundance of color are sources of visual complication. Fluorescent lights flicker and buzz, causing distraction and irritation.An overabundance of colorful objects in a confined space can cause confusion, distraction, and frustration. In a sentence, I hate mega-markets.

Incessant noises are magnified, particularly repetitive, unchanging tones. Ironically, gifted students have a tendency to be in constant motion. In the absence of physical movement, gifted students will tap their feet, tap their pencils and click their pens ... annoying themselves ... and everyone around them.

Go ahead. Crunch, slurp, or smack your food while eating. I dare you.

 After years of living "on sensory overload," I decided that the best way to deal with additional input is to just ignore it. You could say that I tune out, blast off, or escape. I literally cannot hear you.
My mind is thinking of other things, and my ears are closed.

Although this has shaved years of frustration from my life, it has caused some problems. Often, my children have had to repeat themselves several times, and my husband is sure that I should know some information that he has told me before. Thankfully, the most important information is subconsciously stored in the upper section of my brain (someday, I will present a diagram of a personal visual representation of my brain function), and I remember things at the last moment.

So, if I ask you to repeat yourself, don't be mad. Be proud that you were able to break through the barriers of my tiny fortress, freeing me from a self-imposed prison of silence to which I will happily return the moment I hear a potato chip bag being opened.  


Wednesday, August 19, 2015

My purpose...

This morning I was considering my purpose for "Confessions of a Gifted Kid"
Do I feel the need to expose my innermost fears and vulnerabilities to the world? - NO
Do I need sympathy and the world to "understand" me? -no
Truthfully, my passion is for kids. Although proponents of gifted education have had to fight to maintain services for many years, the recent movement to eradicate the gifted program and honors classes from public education is alarming. I could expound for hours on the public misperceptions of the qualifications, characteristics, and needs of gifted students; however, I choose to be brief.
Gifted students need:
Socio-emotional support and guidance
Connection with like-minded peers
Acadmic challenge
Career and occupational guidance
Without these necessary provisions, one of our greatest resources may be lost. Gifted students are academics, inventors, creative thinkers and problem solvers. With the coming trials that our nation will face, we need the minds of gifted students. If we continue on the path to destroy the current support system for these students, based on a misguided denotation of equality, we will destroy the foundation of a nation originally built by gifted human beings.

Monday, August 17, 2015

I didn't see you...

Have you ever passed someone that you knew, and they walked by without acknowledging your existence? Did you think they were rude or angry?
That was probably me.
I can promise that it was not on purpose. Honestly, I didn't see you. Consider this... At any given moment, there are seven billion thoughts running through my head (ok, I have a tendency to hyperbolize... and make new words that fit my purpose.)
Join me there for just a moment...
Yesterday, I was walking my dog and considering the history of the chihuahua, because I once read that it was originally a fighting dog, but why would they rely on dogs to fight? Was it a sport? That would be like having chickens fight. I've read about that, as well. That was when I was studying the practice of foot-binding in China. I wonder what that was like. Although it could be considered somewhat like wearing high heels. It's too bad I can't wear high heels. I would love to be taller. Then, I would feel comfortable teaching high school students. High school years were some of the most miserable of my life. I wonder where my friend is living, now. I could get on Facebook and find her, but those pictures with the funny sayings drive me insane. Most of them are not funny...
I'm sure you get the picture.
All of that was a total of 45 seconds, and it was pure rambling. There were no problems to solve or research ideas.
That does remind me. I wanted to look at website designs for my next project, but first I need to further research best technology practices for application learning. I once read an article...

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Small talk

My confession: I have a deep fear of small talk.
Quite truthfully, I don't understand it.
If we consider the options, they are so few, none of which lead to a meaningful discussion. For example, talk about the weather is mundane and repititive. We all live here! We watch the same weather forecast! Duh, I know it's hot! Frankly, I annoy myself when I make a comment about the weather...
Even worse is the question,
Hi! How are you?
Really, do you want to know how I am? Do you, honestly, think I would tell you? What would you do if I did? This is a question that I am all too guilty of repeating. Most likely because it is a social convention that so easily rolls off the tongue. But if I ask, am I not committing the same crime? Does that make me fake?
In my own mind, I have justified the question by logically deducting that I am being kind by adhering to social convention, thereby, fulfilling my obligation towards social interaction through which is so difficult to navigate.
However, by far, the worst small talk scenario is the reply to the aforementioned question.
My immediate reply is, "doing good."
Before you say a word, let me remind you that I am a well educated woman who knows the proper usages of the words "well" and "good." In an effort to acclimate to the stylized diction surrounding me, I picked up the phrase. In response, I get odd looks or people correct my grammar. Needless to say, I since extracted this phrase for my small talk bag of tricks, but at times, it will annoyingly fly out of my mouth, leaving me embarrassed and bewildered as to how to carry on from that point. Most likely, I will blush, duck my head, and run.
These are just a couple of the daily interactions that go so terribly wrong. I could expound for hours on the unavoidable trenches and explosive land mines of daily social interaction. Instead, I think I will read through the Wiki article giving step-by-step instructions on how to conduct small talk.
An update... This morning, a passed a friend. She smiled and politely said, "Hi, how are you?"
My response... "Well, it's not as hot today, so I'm doing good."

Friday, August 14, 2015


I was diagnosed with giftedness when I was in the first grade.
Yes, I said "diagnosed."
Although being gifted could be considered a positive trait, it is also a label immediately identifying a person as different from the general population. Thus began the quest to find commonality with other human beings.
It has been a long quest.
As a child and teenager, I didn't really connect with anyone. I didn't fit in with those students who discussed music, television, or sports. The other gifted kids were discussing quarks and black holes at the lunch table. I was pondering the theological and philosophical questions of the universe, comparing the connotations of synonyms, and reading every book in the library (fiction).
As a late teenager, I donned my Doc Martins, shaved my head, and pretended to be normal. (Ironic?)
Finally, as an adult, I realized that there is only One who knows me. And one day I will fully know as, even now, I am fully known.
I do not pretend that I am like other gifted kids or that all gifted kids are the same. There are general characteristics that most gifted kids share. However, the most important similarity among humans is the fact that we are each unique.
These are my confessions as told by a gifted, introverted, lifelong learner.