I am posting this poem by Kathy Winters since October is National Sensory Awareness Month and I have two handsome little boys in my life with “hidden disabilities” and a number of family friends who have children with sensory issues as well.
I am the child that looks healthy and fine. I was born with ten fingers and toes. But something is different, somewhere in my mind, And what it is, nobody knows. I am the child that struggles in school, Though they say that I’m perfectly smart. They tell me I’m lazy — can learn if I try — But I don’t seem to know where to start.
I am the child that won’t wear the clothes Which hurt me or bother my feet. I dread sudden noises, can’t handle most smells, And tastes — there are few foods I’ll eat. I am the child that can’t catch the ball And runs with an awkward gait. I am the one chosen last on the team And I cringe as I stand there and wait. I am the child with whom no one will play — The one that gets bullied and teased. I try to fit in and I want to be liked, But nothing I do seems to please.
I am the child that tantrums and freaks Over things that seem petty and trite. You’ll never know how I panic inside, When I’m lost in my anger and fright. I am the child that fidgets and squirms Though I’m told to sit still and be good. Do you think that I choose to be out of control? Don’t you know that I would if I could?
I am the child with the broken heart Though I act like I don’t really care. Perhaps there’s a reason God made me this way — Some message he sent me to share. For I am the child that needs to be loved And accepted and valued too. I am the child that is misunderstood. I am different – but look just like you.