I would like to write about an unusual experience we had in our English class while we were working on the project ‘Understanding Differences’. When our teacher introduced this project to us, someone knocked on the door of our class. When the teacher opened the door, the DIMS students were standing on the threshold of our class with big smiles on their faces. First, we didn’t understand why the teacher invited them to our class. While interacting with them and listening to their stories about school life, I was surprised to find out how happy they were. They knew they were different but they didn’t even care! I always thought that they were sad about their differences but I was wrong. I realized that it was not a bad thing to have a “difference” and we don’t have to feel sorry for the people who are different.
What struck me the most is the way they enjoy small things in life, which is something us, average teens, are not able to do. We always think about bad side of all the things around us, even the most joyful ones. I never thought that these students are so kind and sweet. I
also realized that we have a lot in common: they go to school, take a bus, listen to music, watch Youtube videos, go shopping just like us. However, they do certain things differently: their classroom looks different compared to ours and they take a specially equipped school bus.
Our teacher suggested we do something nice for them to show our appreciation and even offer our friendship. She had an idea to make a personalized bracelet for every student in the DIMS program with their names engraved on each bracelet.
First, I was not impressed, I thought it was a childish activity and that it wasn’t that exciting to make bracelets. Once again, I was wrong! Even a boring activity could become interesting depending on the reason why you are doing it and what you are trying to achieve. If at the beginning I didn’t really see the point in making bracelets. However,
when I finished my bracelet, it occurred to me that the point was very simple: to make someone happy. I wanted my bracelet to make a person who would wear it feel ‘celebrated’ and I wanted them to know that they matter.
The day we went to give the DIMS students their bracelets was quite memorable. They were so happy to see us again, and when they were getting their bracelets, they had sparkles in their eyes. It was so special to see how a small thing could make them so happy. To be honest, I envy them. They have something that we don’t have: that little magic of seeing joy everywhere they look. I wish I could see the world through their eyes sometimes.
This experince taught me many things. First, a ‘difference’ could be a ‘superpower’. The DIMS students see the things we do not see and this is magical. Second, people need to remember that a “difference” is not a burden, you can have a happy life even if you are different. Finally, differences shouldn’t limit you, you can accomlish anything with persistence and willpower. In the end, we are all the same, and our name is human.
Par Alexanne Drouin, 1-75