I know who I can't be now. I also know I have something to offer. I don't crave success, but I crave usefulness. And I crave someone who can help guide me. But the more I think about trekking into the great unknown—to be that iconoclast forging beyond charted territory—I know there are no guides. Julia Child's kitchen is on display at the Smithsonian in D.C. It’s a grand … [Read more...] about Fitz and the Tantrums; or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Gift
Suddenly, there was this community out there who knew my battles, who didn't make me feel like a parental failure because of my outlier son, and who understood that it was possible to have a preschooler who demanded scientifically accurate bedtime stories on the same day he got his head stuck in a friend’s banister. Late 1970s. Books, books, and more books. No one got … [Read more...] about The Long Winding Path of Giftedness
Growing up, no one ever called me “gifted.” I was, however, often referred to as “smart,” which I took as a great compliment. In grade school, I knew everyone, and everyone knew me. Although the term “gifted” wasn’t used, everyone accepted me as “smart” and treated me just like everyone else was treated. I really felt like I belonged. By the time I began junior high, … [Read more...] about Discovering and Connecting
As a girl, and now a woman, who was still trying to figure out why she didn’t fit a mold or follow a specific path, I began to realize that our identities aren’t about how well and firmly we’re holding a place on one path. It’s about being able to let go of that place or veer off that path, just as long as we’re steady with our own values and dreams, as esoteric and amorphous … [Read more...] about Of Liminality and Finding Ourselves
When you no longer strive to change yourself to fit into the norm—the larger circle of society—you become a part of a much smaller group, a sparse group. And like-minded friends are hard to find. The truth is that it’s fucking near impossible to find someone who understands your giftedness, your intensities, your differently-wired brain, and your do-or-die empathy and … [Read more...] about Learning to Live the Life of a Gifted Adult
I became a talent scout as I started looking for intensities, creativity, ingenuity, and quirkiness in my students and the adults around me. Listening to a comment from a student that was particularly insightful or witty, I dug deeper. If I heard a teacher complain about someone not ever turning in homework, but acing tests, I flew into the office to dig into student files for … [Read more...] about Brilliant, Gorgeous, Talented, and Fabulous—or a Hacker?
From the outside, I was committed to helping him grow his academic success and resiliency, one spelling test at a time. On the inside, my stomach was in knots, and the friction of my inner wisdom was screaming at me, "THIS IS WRONG!" I woke up today feeling hopeful and confident. Yesterday was full of negative thought patterns and downward spirals. Yesterday was not a day … [Read more...] about Turning My Face to the Light