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An Insurmountable Dream

Ever dream of doing something which seemed insurmountable? I’ve had lots of  them. As a matter of fact, for years I wished to touch hearts through writing. But I had a personal mountain to overcome.

Over thirty years ago, I tested positive as learning disabled. This followed flunking kindergarten and the efforts of my then bug-eyed teacher to coerce me into using my right hand instead of my left. After several weeks of numerous, unsuccessful, attempts to train me to be a right handed person, one day my grey haired teacher snapped.

“You will not!”…Her jaw quivered and her pale complexion turned a ruddy red…“write with your left hand!” Frustrated by my obvious ineptness and inability to learn, she spat. “Left handedness is a sign of retardation.” My bottom lip trembled as I switched the fat pencil to my right hand and held it awkwardly.

Two years later, one breezy fall morning, my second grade teacher led me to a room on the other side of the large campus. She opened the special education door and told me I would need to come here each day. I didn’t understand why I couldn’t stay with my class and thought I had committed a crime. I couldn’t read or write and I still used my left hand. I hung my humiliated head. An aide showed me to my desk and I sat there with my new reader. I looked around the classroom and studied the various children and their obvious physical needs.

My gosh! What’s wrong with me? I don’t have crossed eyes or a problem walking.

Across the room, the classroom door nested in a wall of windows which overlooked the black top playground. While I waited for instruction, a revelation settled on me and I wanted to rush out the door and run home.

I use my left hand. I cast my ashamed eyes down at the grey blue book in my hands. The yellow, meaningless, letters formed an unknown title to me. I’m a retard. A retard!

Roll the camera forward to my fortieth year. It was a season of great personal accomplishment. In fact, I did a very un-retarded thing…I wrote a book. What does it take to achieve a personal dream of any kind? For me, I had to ignore my self critic (she’s very bossy and undermines creativity), and defy the memory of my kindergarten teacher’s hurtful words. I also looked to God for help with what seemed to me an insurmountable mountain to climb and then I simply wrote.

The day I held in my hands the first copy of Angels Appearing, I nearly laughed with the rare joy I experienced. With God’s help, I had climbed Mount Everest, in a matter of speaking, and beat personal odds. I pushed through the challenges which loomed before me and achieved the desire in my heart to touch others through writing.

That achievement replaced what my bug eyed teacher told me. I wasn’t retarded; nothing’s wrong with my intelligence, and I learned something valuable…with God, dreams do come true.

Angels Appearing sold 1,000 copies in a short period of time. I shook my head in amazement and shouted a praise to the Lord. I’m currently working on my second book. It’s loaded with suspense and action, forgiving and overcoming, sorrow, love beyond reason, and great joy. I can’t wait until it’s published, that’ll be like climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro. ©

Pamela Koefoed

To contact Pamela write to:


Photo by © Rcaucino |

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