Out Of My Mind
(Not Me Her) By Sharon Draper
Melody. Words. Memory.
That sums up the story of Melody. But not all of it.
Melody can't speak but she has a photographic memory. She remembered music and words the best. She understood many words at a young age. She has cerebral palsy. Cerebral Palsy - Cerebral palsy is a group of disorders that can involve brain and nervous system functions, such as movement, learning, hearing, seeing, and thinking. There are several different types of cerebral palsy, including spastic, dyskinetic, ataxic, hypotonic, and mixed. The doctors think since she has it, she is dumb and not able to quickly process information. They will decide if they will be able to keep her home or send her to a school where people treat people with that disorder. There are not many local options though. Her mother stood up for her and said she will not be sent away and said that she is smarter than the doctor will ever be. This is very true because when you loose one sense, your others are more aware.
She was more aware than anyone in school. She noticed the same things happening over and over. She was even knew she was in the same room. They went over the alphabet a thousand times. Her neighbor encouraged her to learn. In 5th grade she was put in a class with "regular" kids. Some people laughed at her treated her as disabled.
One Christmas she got a machine that let her talk. With it, she felt like a different person. When it was time to choose a Whiz-Kids team to represent Spaulding Elementary in a state competition, and possibly, in Washington D.C., teachers did not really think of Melody. When Melody passed the first round, teachers and students thought it was a coincidence, or Melody just cheated. When Melody passed the second time, there were no more reasons for a doubt Melody.Melody was selected as one of the participants in the Whiz-Kids competition, and her team won the regional game. That meant Melody and her classmates were to represent their state on a national level in Washington D.C.
Then Mr. Dimming forgot to tell melody about the flight cancellation. She felt devastated. As Melody was thinking about her failure, her mom was going to take her to school. It was one of the days when things were not going right from the time she woke up - pouring rain, spilled orange juice, sick little sister.. Melody's mom was hurrying to get to work and to drop Melody at school. As she was backing her car, she didn't see her little daughter, Penny, following her. Melody saw Penny, and tried to stop her mom, but mom did not know what Melody was trying to say. Melody could not prevent the accident. Penny had to go to the hospital, but luckily she survived.
Then Melody finished her story right where she began it.
Who Am I?
Lesson and Theme
Her favorite words
verbalized - verb
1. express (ideas or feelings) in words, esp. by speaking out loud.
"they are unable to verbalize their real feelings"
2. speak, esp. at excessive length and with little real content.
"the dangers of verbalizing about art"
contentment - noun
"he found contentment in living a simple life in the country"
She has wanted to say so much that was on her mind and she was battling that disability.
Her disability or condition is called Cerebral Palsy. It takes away the ability to talk. It is her biggest fear.
The world from her perspective
When she got the Medi-Talker she could finally talk and I could understand the world from her perspective.1. I'm surrounded by thousands of words. Maybe millions.
Words were like sweet, liquid gifts and I drank them like lemonade.
2. So on that first Monday back to, Elvira was the star of the day, making me the center of attention.
Cathedral, Mayonnaise, Pomegranate, Mississippi, Neapolitan, Hippopotamus, Silky, Terrifying, Iridescent"
Words were Melody's life. We use them but she worships them. She wants to use them as easily as we do. But she couldn't.