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29 October 2014

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Voices: This Norfolk Life

Spooky castle in moonlight
The perfect home for Terror Tower

This Norfolk Life: Story of a boy's story

by Kay Reeve
"My inspiration comes from the title of this project, the outstanding changes since I de-registered my son from school last May and his battle with Aspergers," said Kay.

"I'm going to write a horror story," said Matthew brightly.

Eight months of home education and finally Matthew has found his own steam. His own motivation and will power to choose his work for today and get into it heart and soul.

At school, he was depressed. He couldn't cope with all the noise, constant fidgeting and movement of the classroom. 

The child next to him - rubbing out work time and time again - would drive him to distraction as the table rocked and rocked with the action of removing yet another error.

All Matthew wanted was the peace and quiet that his Aspergers wouldn't allow.

As every solitary sound reached his ears sharply, every movement distracted his eyes, every touch of child sweeping past or movement of his chair being knocked by feet made it agonisingly difficult to remain seated and calm. He just wanted to run, to hide to be somewhere, anywhere ALONE!

Today, instead of a name and date followed by an empty page and a raging temper, instead of an eight line story that became an accepted level of 'making an effort', the peaceful setting of home allowed Matthew's imagination to begin it's battle of fighting back against all the horrendous sensory stimuli of 30 other kids.

Today the fuel was raging full steam ahead as Matthew's pencil rail-roaded line upon line of expressions onto paper.

By lunchtime, two whole sides of narrow lined A4, were covered in a pattern that only ever existed inside his head until now. He was writing a story! I say writing as he still hadn't concluded.

As he read to us the story of Terror Tower, we sat dumbfounded.

Half by the plot that was expressed further by his amazingly expressive reading skills. Half by the realization of the talent that had just poured so freely from his mind and that he had surprised himself.

Matthew's eyes were wild with excitement as his voice squeaked, groaned and tremored with the fears and horrors of the characters' adventures.

The next library visit brought home spooky castles and ghost stories, self-chosen to help himself find inspiration for the rest of his masterpiece.

Finally, four pages long, I typed it all up for him. I even entered another of his recent stories Paul's Adventures into a Norfolk competition. It was all about a family of Blue-tits. I was even inspired into writing a story myself, a true story... this story.

Me? I'm just glad that I made one of the most difficult decisions a parent could ever face. I stopped sending my child to school, so he could start learning again.

Story laureate Sue Welfare writes: A really inspirational, informative and well written piece without being either patronising or mawkish.

last updated: 12/10/05
Have Your Say
Add your comment's to Kay's story, share any experiences you have of living with Aspergers.
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Kay Reeve
Thank you everyone for your kind and inspiring comments. I hope that I can help many people in any small way possible by just sharing this part of my life. I have now been motivated by Mark's comments (thank you) to build by own webpage about this, including a few helpful links. Many thanks again to all for your support.
Tue Sep 13 21:42:43 2005

I hope the author becomes well read nationally and internationally. They have rung bells and have got a clear gift. Their descriptions of sensory disturbances is breath-taking but reassuring! You have the sense here that this is somebody who can help other children and their families. I wish this author much luck and success in their work. Thank you for your help.
Wed Sep 7 23:00:43 2005

Carol Gaffney
My son and daughter both have Asperger's. I have been called to the school because of empty pages for years. They are both very artistic and like to write at home, but can't seem to manage in class. I'm always searching for answers.
Thu Jul 21 13:08:00 2005

Gordon Keable, Aspergers East Anglia
I read this after a call from Kay asking me to accompany her on a visit to the local radio station. I've not met her or Matthew as yet. The story articulates the aspiration of a parent of a child with Asperger's Syndrome wanting the best: educationally, emotionally and creatively -and the determination and love to start achieving this.
Wed Jun 15 20:50:57 2005

Gill Peake
Inspirational - showing an awareness of true values in a difficult situation.
Tue May 17 10:00:44 2005

Claire Locks (mother of 4)
Sometimes the things that are said to be best for our children are far from that, mothers intuition is far stronger then we realise, until we go with our instincts. I'm glad your child is doing so well, congrats!
Mon Apr 18 14:49:39 2005

Christina Able
I think the story's cool and the author happens to be my friend Heidi's mum
Mon Apr 18 11:02:55 2005

Brenda Palmer
Most interesting. Ex Teacher
Wed Apr 13 21:34:51 2005

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