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Out of my mind

In one of my senior classes, we were required to read a novel “Out Of My Mind” by Sharon M Draper. Usually when I get told about a required reading, it automatically am turned off, but right after reading just the second page I knew this would be different. This story is about an eleven year old named Melody who is more than just your average girl. She has a photographic memory and  is highly intelligent but there is one problem, out of the eleven years on this earth, she hasn’t spoken a single word. She has Cerebral Palsy and will never be able to any normal human functions like feed herself, walk herself, or change herself. But in her mind, has so many things trapped in their waiting to get out. During the book, her mom takes her to a specialist to try and see what is going on in Melody’s head because she can tell how smart she is. After the specialist goes through a series of bullshit test, the Dr. tells her mother that it would be best if Melody is put in a home because in his words, she is “severely brain damaged and profoundly retarded.” At this point in time, I felt a rage inside me and couldn’t believe someone would say that about a human being. After wanting to rip this book up, I continued to read to see what the mother would respond with. Melody’s mom said something that will stick with me for the rest of my life. She told the Dr. “You’re not so intelligent, sir– you’re just lucky! All of us who have all our faculties intact are just plain bless. Melody is able to figure out things, communicate, and manage in a world where nothing works right for her. She’s the one with the intelligence!” At that moment, I had like a come to Jesus moment. Melody has to deal with the frustration of everyone passing her off as having nothing but just dust in her head when in all actuality, she is insanely smart. She pushes through this and continues with the desire to want to learn. The only thing that separates her from that doctor is the fact that he is lucky enough to have the ability to walk, talk, and live a normal life. The fact that people doubt others intelligence and refuse to be an advocate/ want to invest time and energy to try understand and help is beyond me. The ignorance that some people still carry with them is what needs to end here and now.

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