Here’s looking forward to understanding from my new classmates.
Many things are racing through my head. My bet is that I’ll love middle school and it will open many doors for me. I’m excited to join some clubs and enjoy again how it feels to be whoever you want to be without people expecting you to be a certain way. I can’t wait to start fresh!
How many times have you wanted to say something but been nervous and stayed quiet? Say you have an idea but just can’t think of how to describe it. How do you feel? Maybe another person doesn’t manage to understand how you talk. You probably feel bad, right?
Remember that when you’re around me. I feel those things all the time. Mainly I ask that you have patience and give me time to write. I am so much better at communicating that way. You give me that chance and you’ll see how nice and smart I am. Maybe make me your friend and you may manage to get used to these things about me. After a while, you won’t notice how I communicate.
Mainly I ask that you don’t make me talk about many things but do some talking to me. Tell me about yourself and what you like and anything interesting.
Please don’t treat me like a baby. It will make me all mad if you do. I’m super smart and can easily understand what you say. How about you just pretend I can talk and treat me the same as everyone else? I’m really a nice guy
My memory is miraculous. I can remember being born and getting meningitis when I was one month old. Maybe you think this is a miraculous memory, but it is very debilitating. My memory is a burden on me for making progress. I can’t forget my past and I meaningfully need to forget. My memory has prevented me from making meaningful changes to my mentality. Meaning I need to leave behind my mentality. Memory has an anchoring effect. My memory is a gift and a curse. I hope to learn to forget the hard times I have had so I can be an optimist about my future again!
In a previous post, Jace shared his letter to the University of Minnesota environment scientist, Dr. Jessica Hellmann. Dr. Hellmann replied by mail, and Jace wanted to post her letter:
I’m mostly feeling better about middle school. Mom and I got to ask Keller about her schedule and how things work. Homework time with Mrs. G is going to be awesome and will be what motivates me to get many things done. We’re going to have our own workspace I’m thinking in the library to study. No more gym which I’m awful at and no language which requires lots of talking. And I’m going to love music class. You made it, mom, how I wanted. You’re amazing. And I’m amazing too for making the plan all detailed.
Here’s a letter I wrote to an awesome scientist (Dr. Jessica Hellmann) I want to learn from:
Dear Dr. Hellmann,
I would like to visit your lab. My mom read an article about you and your Institute. I emphatically agree that we need to adapt to climate change and make amendments to our ways of living and managing more methodolically. Would I be able to a make a visit to your lab? I am a 10-year-old and majorly excited to meet you. Maybe I could help out somehow with your work at the Institute.
Home has been tough. I’ve maybe had the worst week ever. Being sick made me panic and that made me even sicker. My body wouldn’t stop moving. I think I named myself “marathon” for how much I ran. I’m going to lose weight. I finally took some medicine to get my panic more in control.
I’m longing to feel like myself. I’m close. I’ve been learning so much about myself, though. I’m going to mention a few things.
First, I am managing to make progress against mania in two ways. One is my getting obsessed with something. I can fight against that brain guy with my smarts and logic. The other is battling what my eyes do to my brain when I see something moving fast or with lots of designs. I hear screaming in my head. I can’t outsmart that but I can make that go away by using my amazing listening. Music is a lifesaver again.
Mom and I also listened to this book dad found about brains and how we think [Daniel Kahneman, Thinking, Fast and Slow]. That was awesome.
Mom says what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. I’m proof of that!
Jace at the Nutcracker performance
I want to talk about how “my name is Jace” is so easy to say. Rob [my music therapist] taught me a great song that includes that line and now I hear it so it’s much easier to say. Next up is getting better at “I want” and we have lots of great songs for that like Cheap Tricks [“I Want You to Want Me”] and the Backstreet Boys [“I Want It That Way”]. I’m going to practice that next.
I was awesome yesterday! My awesomeness included great talking and my climbing all the way up a massive rock wall. When I got to the top, everyone clapped and cheered!!
The most hard question to answer is an open-ended one. I’m digging for an answer but am never sure it’s right. I’m mostly hating how I’m so scared to fail.
Talking works the same. Do you realize how open ended talking is?!
This gave me a lot to think about. I got to the point where my nerves have gotten better.
My attitude has changed. I am lame how I hate being wrong. Many times I’d rather say nothing. Maybe I’m holding myself back. But I’m going to give myself a break.
Mom, you were helpful when you pointed out that I could practice talking in my head. I’m going to try that. No more making myself too scared to try.
I just finished Oliver Sacks’ Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain. I want to share how remarkable his writing is, and how humane he is. He tells stories about people with neurological abnormalities and makes inferences about the brain’s meaning. My favorite chapter is “Music on the Brain: Imagery and Imagination” [pdf download]. He describes how he was different from his parents in terms of musical imagery, and he helped me to understand my amazing musical abilities. He is a remarkable neurologist, writer, and human being!