I’m on the track team at my high school. I sit at the top of the bleachers waiting for my race to start. My teammates don’t see me because I am invisible.
I sit at the lunch table at school with my peers, the table is crowded but they don’t see me, because I am invisible.
Sometimes adults can see me for short periods at a time. But it doesn’t last long. Bit-by-bit after several minutes I fade away right in front of their eyes and they don’t even notice. I am invisible. My mom is the only one who can see me all the time.
I could be a superhero with the power of invisibility and I could save the world. I could do it you know.
Most of the time I don’t mind being invisible. When you are invisible people can’t expect things from you. They can’t tease or insult you. Most of the time I like it.
My Mom’s the one who doesn’t like my superpower. I think it hurts her. I think she thinks that my superpower makes me lonely. While sometimes this is true, I for the most part am not. I have my computer, my TV, and my stuffed animals. I have a friend named Allie who hangs out with me during the week.
When you are invisible you have your very own world. You can wear what you want, talk and sing to yourself in public (when you do this you become even more invisible). You can do what you want and no one even cares.
I wish I could make my Mom see that it’s okay to be invisible. That it doesn’t hurt me. That it’s a shield I use to protect myself. It’s a place of comfort and familiarity for me. I want my Mom to see that even though I am alone and invisible. I am not lonely.
Sometimes my Mom takes me to be with others, who are invisible like me. We have fun, we can be goofy and silly. Here in this group of invisible people, we all are equal. No one is judged. Here in this place everyone thinks I am smart and funny. This is the only time that adults can see me for an extended amount of time.
What is this place you might wonder. I’ll tell you so perhaps one day you can come and SEE me. It’s called Special Olympics and for those few hours I can be seen, Friends cheer for me, strangers are proud of me. This is a place of wonder, where there are no limits, only winners.
If you have never been to a Special Olympic event you are missing out. It will transform you, the invisible will be seen and you will wonder why you didn’t come sooner, why you didn’t SEE these super hero’s before. And just by seeing these super hero’s, you become more accepting and understanding about them.
Perhaps you will gain the super power to see the invisible all the time. And this might just change your life, for you see, the invisible are a joyous lot and that joy is infectious. So go grab your pom poms and get yourself to a Special Olympic event and get infected. You will be glad you did!
About Cyndee Hopkins: I am an author and speaker and Mom four kids, the youngest is an Autistic teen age girl. I am also on the board of a private special needs school. I am currently working with Nike to develop a competitive running shoe that doesn't require tying (my daughter has trouble with fine motor skills) Emma runs distance for her high school track and cross country team and of course Special Olympics.