Sometimes life is full of surprises and when a curve ball is thrown, you do the best you can in catching it. I never knew in my wildest dreams I would become the mother of three children, each having a different hidden disability. I was glad I had taught for several years before getting married and raising a family, because I would need those skills to regulate through the political, educational system to help my children in succeeding.
I grew up as a shy, country girl and had to learn to play 'hardball,' when it came to becoming my children's advocate in obtaining a 504 Plan for all three! My oldest had a central auditory processing disorder, my middle child had mild cerebral palsy, while my youngest had a visual processing disorder. Back then, in order for one's child to obtain a 504 Plan, it required a medical letter. Nowadays, it's not necessary. The child study team at a school can issue a 504 Plan, without the need for medical documentation. However, without having a medical letter clearly stating the child's medical diagnosis, these 504 Plans do not really have to be enforced. Hey, I've learned something from being my children's advocate, such as communicating with a civil rights lawyer and not leaving a doctor's office without making sure a medical letter was forthcoming, and when submitting medical documentation at a child study meeting, I've kept a copy at home, and then a follow-up at the school asking to see my child's file folder. You see, sometimes documentation goes missing and then the school is not liable.
I was on a roller-coaster ride, until each of my children graduated from a university and got an entry position leading into a career path. It was hard! I can't tell how many times I was threatened and/or intimidated by school officials. In fact, I even got a death threat!
I wrote my first non-fictional book about my children's hidden disabilities involving 504 Plans, after my first child graduated from high school. I had an active email and sold a number of this self-published book under a pen name. I wrote this book to help parents. The book contained copies of my children's medical letters and 504 Plans (pertinent information blacked out).
Once I became a literacy specialist, I was shocked to see how some of the teachers conducted their classroom. Students were labeled the first week of school and were destined in falling between the cracks. I never taught like that! I came to believe they just didn't know better! It was easier to say a child was dumb, when in fact a few accommodations might just make a world of difference. So, I created a PPT and I was only given a chance to use it once in a workshop for teachers.
I took the PPT, created a book, and published it under the pen name, 'Margaret Brown.' Of course, I didn't use my children's real names. After I retired, I thought about doing workshops, perhaps PTA, but I didn't pursue it. Instead, I got into creating educational products, writing fiction, and working for my older daughter as a medical billing specialist.
If you have the writing bug and want to write something that happened in your life, you should! It doesn't have to become a money-maker. If your book can help someone, then it's worth it!