this week’s essay and podcast, Clark Hamm, a seventh grader at Brattleboro Area
Union Middle School, explains what it’s
like to have Asperger Syndrome and what it’s like to find a friend. The piece
was created as part of the school curriculum for the This I Believe project.
For more great student writing go to youngwritersproject.org
Some people are special.
Sometimes in a good way, sometimes in a bad way. Me? Well I’m both. Being smart
and somewhat neurotic is confusing. What I mean is that the way I act is weird
to people while, to me, I’m just doing my regular thing.
The reason I act weird is
because I have a disorder. Some people have Down Syndrome, some
people have ADD, some have ADHD and some people (like me)
have Asperger Syndrome. For those who don’t now what that
means, let me explain it this way, I have a very high intelligence
but I’m socially challenged. From my point of view, it’s like being in a mosh
pit: no communication and everything all scrambled together.
It has affected me
since I was in kindergarten. I didn’t have a lot of friends. I didn’t
have a lot of friends because I acted different from the other kids and to them
I was not "normal". I was the "weird kid who was too sensitive and always was
picked on for being different." When I was10 my mother signed me up for a
therapist. She worked with me on my talking abilities and making
friends. That helped but very little.
I have since gotten
better but there was something missing, something important. That thing
was a friend who I could relate to, a friend who had gone though more
hard-ships then I could have gone though in a life time. At the beginning
of the school year I found that person. When I first met her she
helped me so much. In the past months up until now, we have become the best of
friends and starting our own band.
So, in conclusion, just know that
even when everything seems dim or all hope is lost just remember: There’s
always a light, even the tiniest light, in this big, dark void of a world.
This I Believe