From Will Power to Word Power - The Beauty of Literacy

Q: Where do you live?


No, the answer above is not a name of a place. Neither are those curse words.

It is the kind of answer I wrote on a written test. Not only in an English test but also on any test. That was way back when I was seven.

Back then, save for my own name I couldn't read a single word.

Even though I knew every letter of the alphabet, sadly the string of letters didn't make any sense to me.

How I envied my classmates back then. It didn't help that even my homeroom teacher thought that I was beyond hopeless. The illiterate among us were usually left to own own devices. 

While the whole class was reading a book aloud, all I could do was stared longingly at the string of words on the page.

Feeling inadequate, I wished hard that one day I would be able to read too.

When the year-end school holiday rolled around, I made it my mission to learn how to read.

I invested all my heart and time into this mission.

Mustering all my will, I forced myself to stare at the different words on the book and tried making sense of each. I employed whatever little knowledge I had to achieve my goal, to be able to read.

For the first few attempts, I still failed leaving me temporarily dismayed. Despite feeling miserable by my failed attempts, I didn't give up. I kept on trying.

After a few more struggle, an idea suddenly struck. Each letter probably had a sound to it. With this idea in mind, I tried stressing on the sound of the name of each letter. And eureka!

What do you know?

Finally, I knew how to read!

From then on, it made me realize that you can achieve whatever you have set your mind to only if you are willing to invest enough time and effort into it.

Of course, to achieve your goal it's not without struggle but because of your persistent effort it makes attaining your goal becomes that much more valuable.

How about you? How old were you when you know how to read?