India Marzin was diagnosed with dyslexia at the later age of 16, having spent most of her education feeling something was ‘terribly wrong’ Her diagnosis gave her a sense of relief but also shame. 5 years on India now realises she wasted her time hiding what is a part of her and believes that it’s a “process that begins with a conversation”, with that in mind, India now runs a podcast interviewing likeminded dyslexics to hear their stories, struggles and successes.
My dyslexia story starts with struggling in secondary school especially with maths and languages. When I was 16, a teacher of mine read 1 essay right at the beginning of the year, that I had wrote and called my mother in for a meeting. She told us she was positive that I was dyslexic and was shocked no one had ever picked up on it. She suggested seeing the school specialist, who confirmed the diagnosis.
Why can everyone do it except me?
For me, when I found out I was dyslexic, I honestly felt a sense of relief, for the first time in my life I could breathe knowing I wasn’t an idiot basically. My whole life I thought there was something terribly wrong with me, I found myself always asking the question; but why can everyone do it except me ? (e.g. correct spelling, any sort of maths, timetables etc…) In a sense discovering I was dyslexic was a relief initially, then it turned into something I decided I was now ashamed about, it was something I saw as a weakness, so I chose to keep it to myself, not to tell anyone I was ‘different’. This definitely impacted my life in a negative way, the school I was in when I found out as well was not particularly supportive, they saw learning disabilities more as a flaw for the class, I felt like I was keeping everyone behind if I asked the teacher to repeat something or ask a question.
Turning a negative into a positive
Dyslexia really only started affecting my life in a positive way very recently. When I started this project about dyslexia for my University module I had no idea how invested I was going to get and how much this would help me. Now I can proudly say I’m dyslexic and the positive that has come out of that is my podcast, called ‘Understanding Dyslexia’. This podcast has completely shifted the way I think about dyslexia from negative to positive, without a shadow of a doubt. My aim is to help others do the same.
You can find India’s podcast on google play here: https://bit.ly/39GUNse
Understanding your own dyslexia
Talk to people about your dyslexia, don’t shy away, don’t be afraid to own up to your dyslexia, trust me here, I wasted 5 years of my life hiding from what was undeniably a part of me. The sooner you understand your dyslexia, the sooner you’ll learn to deal with it and then hopefully accept it. It’s a process that begins with a conversation.
My new definition of dyslexia is; Dyslexia is a specific learning ABILITY, neurobiological in origin. It is typically characterised by strengths that may include; creative expression, athletic performance and scientific discovery.