This Little Girl Is Me

This little girl in the middle was born sensitive and strong and confident. She grew up in a good solid home with a family who loved her and cared for her well. She attended Denver Public Schools.

This little girl was known for being sweet, quiet and shy, but also curious and adventurous and tough, preferring to hang with the boys playing what they were playing. She was called a “tomboy”. She loved to read and write, roller skate, play tennis, soccer, and swim.

Photograph of me and my brother, Danny (on my left) and my cousin, David (on my right). Denver, Colorado Summer in the backyard, 1973

This little girl was labeled as a gifted learner and an accelerated student, but when she was in high school she was bored in school, preferring to focus on athletics and jobs where she felt confident, was actively engaged, and learned from her experiences. She was always a dependable worker and a talented athlete. She had dreams of becoming an international tennis star, a journalist, and a civil rights lawyer. She also struggled with a sleep disorder, gastrointestinal issues, and some sensitivities.

She left home at 18 to pursue an undergraduate degree in journalism from University of Colorado Boulder. She became insecure about her writing abilities and study abilities and switched her major to match her subject matter interests. She focused on studying history and eventually determined to also become a school teacher. She focused on tennis while working at Boulder Country Club throughout college and quietly still aspired to attend law school in order to work in civil rights, which she eventually did. She was really a natural born peace maker.

She studied to become a paralegal first and earned a certificate at Denver Paralegal Institute. This gave her the confidence she needed to apply herself to law school. She graduated from New York Law School in 1999 and shocked even herself when she passed the New York bar exam with high scores. She had never felt confident as a traditional student. She went on to hold positions at prestigious places. She worked at the New York City Law Department where she argued in the court of Sonia Sotomayor, she worked at the the New York County District Attorney’s Office, and the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. She found that she enjoyed the law, but she wasn’t built to fight so she became a Mediator and focused on her writing. For six years she served as a policy specialist and senior consultant for the Colorado Department of Education.

She realized as an adult that she is actually autistic, what it means to be gifted, that she can still play like a child, and that she is already a teacher and a writer and that she most loves being a Mother.

Why am I sharing? Because research says that 70% of girls feel different about their futures after hearing from women role models. Thanks to Inspiring Girls International and Women’s Forum for the Economy & Society for asking us to inspire the next generation of girls by sharing our stories.

P.S. #thatlittleboy on the right is my brother Danny Weiss . #thatlittleboy on the left is my cousin David Booth . Weren’t we all adorable in 1973?

Published by stuckinmybra

First and foremost, I am a mother, but I am also an education lawyer and policy specialist, an advocate, and an activist. I've been told by my closest friends that I am a fighter. My practice area is disabilities and education, which is where I have been practicing since 1999, before I had my own kids who are now teenagers and are all educationally identified as twice exceptional. I write about what is on my mind, which feels like a messy file system of old and constantly new information. I think about my kids and the people they are and how to help them become who they want to be in this world. I write about issues that affect deaf people because one of my kids is deaf. I write about giftedness, autism, trauma, inclusion, mental health and chronic illness because those are all things that affect my family. I write about my own life and the people in it. I hope what I write touches peoples hearts and opens people’s minds because I think people in our world need to have more understanding and compassion. I'm here to tell the straight up truth.

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