July 29, 2014

My Stammering Journey......

Hello  Everyone,firstly let me introduce myself.My Name is Kavish and im from Mumbai.I would like to share with you all about my journey with my beloved friend-Stammer.
Imagine an easy question everyone knows how to answer it but what if you can’t.Not because you don’t know the answer but because you simply can’t get the word out.This is what a stammerer experiences in his everyday life not being able to say what he or she wants to even the though the answer is easy.
A stammer is where your speech is filled with involuntary pauses and repetition of words and blocks.I think of it like having a huge glass wall stuck in your head.You know exactly what you want to say but when you try to say something the words hit the wall and  refuse to come out .The repetition of words ,blocks,weird sounds  and facial expressions is  what happens when we try to force the word out.
I have been stammering all my life,the first instance I can recall about my stammering was around the age of 6 or 7,it was at its worst stage where I used to stammer badly and was hesitant to even give my roll call like any other stammerer.A  stammerer can be roughly compared to an iceberg.The 20% above the water what you see is tension,struggle and embarrassment associated with stammering.The 80 % you don’t see is the avoidance of words ,avoidance of situations ,feeling guilty accompanied by shame where you can’t even say your name.One of the worst part of being a stammerer is the way people react when we are asked to say something and we are not able to get the word out because of our stammer..As an instance it made my peers very amusing that why does it take so long to tell my name and questions arise among the peers that why do u speak that way?.And then people start making judgements  about you based on how you speak,just because you stammer doesn’t mean that you are not intelligent.When it  was time for the oral exams,I  would  pretend  that  I am sick  and my illness would be an excuse of not giving the oral exams and as such it wouldn’t affect my grades.Attending or making calls was again a misery.If  there would be a part of the conversation  where I find a word to be difficult to say,I would replace it with a word that is easy for me to tell or at times I would pretend that there is some disturbance ….im not able to hear you and im excused from the conversation.This taught me how to be a pro at avoidance of phone calls. Gradually I started to be more and more conscious of my speech.Every decision that I took which involved speaking was now influenced by the fact that I stammer.By the time I completed high school,it was time to choose a career of my choice.As for choosing my career I was a very confused person,I could relate to stories from my brother who was very fascinated about science but decided to do commerce,just to avoid the stammering situations like giving presentationsSo I also decided to play it safe by enrolling for commerce..Public speaking  in front of large groups is one of the scariest things to do for me ,more so than others.I have to do a lot of preparation.I know exactly what I want to say  and I would have practiced it many times,but when the time comes to talk in front of large groups it would be the most  nervise situations,as we normally don’t stammer when talking to ourselves .So if I do block on a particular word I would replace the word or might use fillers like ,and,hmm,etc.Very often in my stammering journey I feel as if im completely lost as there seems to be no improvement in my speech.My speech gets worse during tensed situations……it keeps fluctuating day in and day out….sometimes I can get that word fluent,sometimes I can’t.Sometimes you feel like you are stuck in an ocean….surrounded by water all alone.You keep on walking with some hope that you can come out of the water,though you don’t know how to swim.You start to loose hope.You feel like giving up.You will have self-defeating thoughts.You will still be confronted by situations that will pull you down.You will still have moments where you loose hope.Do the best that you can do now,don’t underestimate yourself.The expectation that you will reach your destination is beyond your control.
To conclude,I would like to say one thing do not loose hope and give up just because you stammer.Don’t be ashamed of your stammer and hide it.Nobody is perfect in this world except god.
Thank You!!!
(P.S:-This was a prepared speech that i gave in one of the SHG Meets....any suggestions and comments are welcome)

6 comments:

sachin said...

Wow ...
Kavish you have taken a big leap of courage and faith..
Very touching story
And familiar too...

Dinesh said...

Kavish, welcome to the family!!
Thanks for sharing.. Its healing for the one who writes and the one who reads.. Pls keep writing..

Virendra said...

You are not alone in this journey. Everyone of us have gone thru this agony. Many will still go and this circle continues. You have put a real life situation and it requires lot of courage to put it openly and speak the mind with the world. In my opinion the only solution to recover stammering is accept it fully and then desensitize it fully. Let it come the way it is coming, go with full confidence that this is the only way to conquer it. Put videos of your speech on youtube, share on the blog, whats up group. You will lose tonnes of weight. Great! Bravo Kavish!!!

jasbir singh said...

Mr. Kavish nice write up. You have rightly concluded that don't loose hope. Remember everything is ok in the end and even if it is not the world doesn't end. I would like to quote the words of Confucius:
" The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential...these are the keys that will unlock the door to full excellance.

kevin d'souza said...

Nice write up Kavish :-)
@Dinesh - Kavish is quite an old TISA member :)

Dinesh said...

Kevin, All are Welcome - new as well as Old ;-)