Abnormally Normalling

By Kerri Lyons

September, 2016

Wonderful, so now I just figured out that I’m a 2e,
Gifted and disabled, I’m a special kind of unique.




For me, making same-age friends is super tough,
Good to know different parts of my brain are asynchronous.
My advanced cognition combined with poor social skills,
Might cause me to be bullied and do stuff against my will.
So teach me the ways of communicating and positive self-talking,
Protect me from bullies and keep my peers from mocking.


I may need tricks like how to say “hello” and basic communication,
Saying “thank-you,” sharing, and how to navigate social situations.
Teachers — please let me know you care and how to behave,
Since classroom etiquette can be complicated and I might miss the wave.



Mom and dad — focus on what I can do and not what I can’t,
Like teachers, be explicit and clear — please don’t rant.
Help me get courage to join plenty of extra-curriculars,
Provide me with lots of choices and model good behaviors.
Getting me involved a lot, and encouraging participation,
Makes it much more likely for me to make it to graduation.


Please take note if I’m prone to extroverting or introverting,
And helping me develop personal strengths and interests is king.
A strong self-concept will keep my psychological well-being,
Resistant to stress, positive outlook and always believing.
It’s sad some educators don’t have a clue what 2e is, This newsletter votes to increase programs and awareness.

So, dear parents, you and I are the best advocates,
We must make sure all professionals involved communicate.
I’ll need the IEPs and 504s so that I can show my best side.
And make sure my gifts and disabilities are correctly identified.



So I’ve also got social and emotional vulnerability,
And despite understanding, I might be inhibited by my disability.
Prone to underachieving, low self-esteem, and dropping out.
Ugh, also anxiety, depression, and some serious self-doubt.



My gifts give me high expectations and the drive to be perfect,
My strengths and limitations I need to understand and respect.
Maslow’s hierarchy is something I want to climb,
But with the discrepancies in my life, it might take time.
I’ll need some help learning to do that “introspection,”
And along the way be forming good emotional foundations.
Emotional stress will cause me to fight or flight,
And you might have to step in and give me some insight.
When it comes to careers, get ready to think outside the box,
Since conventional university might not be where I rock.


With each challenge I face, the less I will waver.
I’ll learn to self-regulate and develop positive behavior,
I’ll gain a positive self-concept and learn to maintain self-esteem,
Since we all know that the world can be quite mean.
You can’t save me forever and I want to be self-sufficient,
I need to learn to set realistic goals and be more efficient.
Make sure to check up and ask me about my frustration,
So I learn to put words and thoughts into my situation.
It’s important for me to learn to express my talents,
But in the end, it’s really about creating a happy life balance.


Kerri Lyons fell in love with education while working as a professional teaching assistant at Duke University. She’s now pursuing a master’s degree in vision function and learning at Pacific University. When she’s not shining lights in people’s eyes, you’ll find her outdoors, running, skiing, biking, climbing, or just counting the clouds.   

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