My Wonderful Life

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Chapter 1: chapter 1
(by Maheen Wickramasinghe, added on 24 October 2013 07:51 AM)


Introduction:

This book that I am about to write, is dedicated to each and every single one of my friends, relatives, and family. For now, I am only sending this to those who I deeply trust and who are very dear to me, including those on this website. This is going out to a selected member of people in my address book who have, and are continuing to be, the most caring, loving, wonderful bunch of people I have ever had in my life. Folks, if it wasn't for your love, support, friendship and encouragement, I wouldn't be where I am at today. In 2012, my dear brother and cousin, Nirosh, encouraged me to write a book about my life. He told me that I should write about my life in full detail and to send it out to my trusted friends and family. I thought about it, and I decided to start writing!:) Now, I decided to do this book in chapters. This way, it will be easier for you. You can all make a print out of these chapters as some of these will be quite lenghthy, and you certainly can read at your own leisure. I am writing this mostly by myself, so there won't be any co-writers, editors, etc however, Nirosh my dear brother gave me some ideas as we had a long talk about how I should put this book into full detail. I would like to first say to you all, that I will absolutely not make a single negative, derogatory remark to any of my parents, family, relatives, aunts, uncles, and dear friends in this book. That is definitely not the right thing to do, as that would be very inappropriate for my family's safety. I will not gossip or bad mouth a single person in this book. Some of you might find what I am about to write a little contervercial, shocking and at the same time, surprising. It is all with good writing, and I am writing all this from my heart. Even though some of my dear family are now gone, I will always express my sincere appreciation and gratitude towards them and and all of you for all that you have and are continuing to do for me. I feel like 2013 out of all the years I have been alive, has been a total changing point of my life spiritually and emotionally. Friends, I have not been the same since. God has done so many many wonderful things for me and I now feel like it is time to tell you how God has changed my life in this detailed book. I sincerely hope you will find what I will write powerful, and I can hardly wait for your comments and what you have to say. If you have any criticisms, I will not at all take them the wrong way. I will try to correct them immediately as I want to get this book published locally in Canada!! Telling you all this folks, litearlly is giving me cold chills of excitement and joy! I will start off by sending you each chapter one day at a time. I'm not sure how many chapters there will be, but I promise that I will do my absolute best to write this to you good naturedly and in a caring manner. I will not write anything that will bore you like in certain biographies. That is a promise. This book is dedicated to a person who has this year, made a huge change in my life. This person has had such a powerful effect in bringing my life back to normal in 2012, God bless her. Hannah Day.

Chatper 1:

It was a very hard start for my loving mother who gave birth to me on the 16th of September, 1984. I of course couldn't remember anything at that time due to my brain not fully developed until I was 2 years of age, but over the years I was able to ask my mother a lot of questions about my early start. Oneday, my eyes suddenly got extremely red. This of course was a huge scare for my parents. Tears always come into my eyes when I think about what my mother told me and as I write this to you, I truly could feel the sorrow and pain my mother had to go through. My mom and dad took me to a doctor somewhere in Sri Lanka. The doctors for some reason told my parents that my eyes were red due to cancer. Well, needless to say, this got my parents very suspicious and scared at the same time. They then immediately rushed me to England where they again took me to an ophthalmologist at the Moorfield hospital. This hospital is the oldest eye hospital in the world. It was there that my parents found out, that I was born totally blind. My mother was devastated. My dad too was shock. My dear mother did not get over the shock of the scare of me being blind for a long time. You see friends, I have a rare eye condition called, norries disease. This condition is the same as what my uncle has who is also blind. He is my momís brother. This condition makes blind people unable to do a number of things and norries cause learning disabilities for a number of blind people, and unfortunately, this includes myuncle and I. Later, I will talk to you about some of these disabilities and how teachers in schools were unable to understand about my disability very well. Things got extremely rough for several months. My parents then got me back to Sri Lanka and my mother from what I can remember being told, went for lots of councelling and they did not at the time know what to think of. Then, my parents finally decided to get my aunt who's my dad's sister, to look after me while my mother recovered from the shock. My aunt moved with us to Bermuda where my father was stationed, and she looked after me for one year. Now, I deeply thank her from the bottom of my heart for looking after me and taking extra good care of me and my mother. I am very greatful for all that she did for me. My aunt left Bermuda I believe before I turned 2 years old. From that day forward, it has been my mom and dad looking after me ever since.

I was in seventh heaven with the way my life was going when I was young. I attended nursery school in Bermuda and absolutely loved it. Oh friends, I can still remember the first day when I attended nursery school. I was scared. And I mean, really really scared. I cried and cried and screamed. I could not bear to go to school. I hated it. I could not understand what my parents were trying to do to me. I was shocked. I will tell you another story, something I used to do almost every morning. When I went to my first nursery school, everytime we got close to the school when mom drove me, I would put my whole right hand in my mouth and pretended to throw up. It was my way of saying, oh mommy I can't go to school I don't like it I wanna go home. Mom didn't take much notice of it until I continued to keep doing that rotten thing. Then finally, the teacher who is also a Sri Lankan who is a close friend, told mom that if I kept on doing this, I would have to eat my breakfast at the school. Well, that is exactly what mom did. She made my breakfast and packed it in my little lunch box and took it to the school. I guess I must have stopped doing that awful thing!:) I then learned a lot of things. We sang songs, told stories, but I did not learn braille there until I was 5 years old.

I can still remember waking up in the middle of the night, hollering and crying and wetting my diapers until mom carried me and calmed me down. I got awful nightmares in those early days folks. It was through these rough years, that my life, began to change. My father bought several records and cassettes of some of the music they grew up with such as Tom Jones, Elvis Presley and Engelbert Humperdinck. I grew up listening to these legends and I can remember so well when tucked to bed every night, my lullaby's were Elvis, Tom Jones, Engelbert, and some of the artists who were starting to make it big at that time such as Michael Jackson, Phil Collins, and my favorite at that time, Whitney Houston. I just loved Whitney's singing and it devastated me when she sadly passed away in 2012, same with Michael Jackson in 2009. What awful tragedies. Elvis, however, was to make a huge change in my life when I was very young and to this day, he still remains my favorite of all time! I will talk about Elvis in my later chapters and how his music changed my life. I begged to have an organ. I still remember vividly asking mom in Sinhalese which is what we call mom, "Ammi, I want to play the piano." I believe on my 3rd birthday, my dad got me a small organ which I treasured. I played and fooled around with the keys, not knowing of course how to play note for note. My grandmother whom I still love, came over to Bermuda to stay with us and support my family when I was 3 years old. Then one morning and as much as I try to ask my memory to help me remember it, it still won't properly come back. I asked my grandmother how it all began, and she told me the story. One morning while my mom and grandma were in the kitchen, they heard me playing the organ like I did everyday. Then, they heard me playing the Christmas classic, Joy To The World! I believe they got my dad to hear me play when he came home from work that evening. Well, they were totally shocked. I picked that song up by ear! I still chuckle thinking about how I was able to pick that song up without anyone teaching me! I began playing more and more, then they took me for piano lessons in Bermuda. I was just thrilled. Music meant ever so much to me friends, and it still does to this very day. After listening to all those cassettes and records, I began to show a huge interest in music. I will always say this. If it wasn't for my parents bringing me up listening to music, I would never have gotten interested to become a musician. God bless them.

End of Chapter 1.


Chapter 2: chapter 2
(by Maheen Wickramasinghe, added on 25 October 2013 10:14 AM)


In 1988, my family and I moved to Canada. My parents found out that the education and facilities are very good in Canada, and boy! were they ever right. I moved there when I was 4 years old and lived in a city called Brampton, which is in the province of Ontario. I absolutely loved it. I fell in love with the people so much there. I started kindergarten in September of 88. I was in heaven with the teachers and students at the school. It was at this school where I learned braille, which is something all blind people use to read as blind people canít read print. I was able to read braille almost immediately after learning it. You see folks, I was able to learn basic courses very fast. It is only advanced courses that I found extremely difficult to learn. I had to go through some rotten times with certain teachers who gave me a hard time in not being able to understand my learning disabilities due to my rare eye condition, and friends and neighbours, this is what caused my depression.

My parents got me my first electric piano on my 5th birthday! Oh my goodness, was it ever a dream come true! I absolutely fell in love with it and didn't stop playing. I can even remember waking up very early one morning I believe it was around 4 or 5, wanting to play the piano! It was funny! Music was such a blessing to me, and it has been a blessing to this very day. I loved to explore the rhythms on the piano and at that time, I loved anything that had a rhythm to it. Sounds, was something I loved. You see friends and neighbours, when I was growing up and I have come to know about this from a lot of blind people from a school I attended, which I will tell you more about later. I liked anything that was very beaty. I loved the sound of drum beats and drum rolls. I began this habit of continuously rocking back and forth to anything even when the music was turned off. I even did something very embarrassing. I flapped both of my hands very badly and I mean, really badly like a bird. I can't quite understand whether this had to do with my illness or eye condition, but I became extremely hyper. I would not even sit or stand still in those early days. I moved my head from side to side, do all sorts of embarrassing, crazy things while sitting down and standing. Oh gosh, it was a complete utter embarrassment especially when I was out in public. I humbly regret the way I behaved in those days. It was so rough. I even had this continuous habit of laughing non stop and giggling over and over for things that were not even appropriate. People must have gotten so sick of me in those early days, wow! I would laugh so long and so loudly like a crazy boy. Some people rightfully, complained to my parents about that giggling habit and they too found it difficult for me to stop. Folks, it was through these difficult times and habits that I also developed a speech problem. I still can't quite make out whether it had to do with my sickness, my nervousness and anxiety beginning, but I developed a stutter which was very severe. At that time, I did not know how overwhelming it was for me until now. I did not know what the word, nervous, or anxious, meant. I kept on stuttering so badly until finally, my parents took me to a speech theropist at the school I went, which I will talk more about later. My stutter did not quite go away until I actually began taking medication. This is quite freaky. Through all those embarrassing habits and problems, I still made friends with extremely loyal people and I loved them deeply. I still think of them very much. I didn't overcome those embarrassing habits of rocking and flapping until I reached the age of 15. I then began to realize I had a problem, and I realized those habits were becoming an embarrassment to a lot of people. I have not rocked back and forth or flapped ever since. I know I'm getting ahead of myself here, but as I was saying, I loved my first piano very much. I still have that piano and it remains in Sri Lanka. I am soon hoping to get an updated electric piano as I want one very badly. I celebrated my 5th birthday in Canada, but my memory isn't too good with that day.

My parents first took me to look at a school for the blind in Brantford, Ontario when I was 5 years old. It is called, W. Ross McDonald. I can actually remember my parents taking me there and having them play audiobooks. I began laughing and the teachers had to quiet me down. Well, I guess my parents thought I was too disabled and didn't have enough learning experience to keep me at that school, so they transfered me to a beautiful school in Brampton, which I call, the turning point in my life. I just loved it. It is called, St. Brigitte school. There were two blind students at that school. Myself, and another beautiful girl who unfortunately has a lot more severe disabilities than I do, bless her heart. She was and is, a beautiful person and it breaks my heart she had to go through so much. I had several tutors in my classroom. In sighted schools with blind people, the staff have to higher tutors to help them with their work. I brailled out my homework, and my wonderful tutors printed the work out for the teachers. It was all fun! I can remember writing day to day journals about my evening, about my favorite subject, music, and other things. I would even make up funny child like stories which were quite amusing, some of which I will not go into in this book as I did write one completely inappropriate story which would not be appropriate to talk about in this book. I loved to read children stories in those days. I learned a lot of very interesting subjects like French, English, mathamatics which I love, geography which to this day is my worst subject, science which is also my worst subject, pottery which I absolutely love, and music. Our music subjects were much different than to what I was used to back then. I can remember so well playing with plasticine, which I just loved. I can remember making snakes and balls with those plasticines and really loving the feel of those playdoughs. I loved it! In September of 1992 when I started grade 3, I met an absolutely, beautiful tutor who to this day, remains a close friend to me and my parents. I won't mention her name. I decided not to mention any names in this biography. She became extremely special and dear to my heart. She taught me lots of wonderful things and she became a very special friend to my mother. It was a huge blessing to have had her as my tutor. She even hired my mother to look after her baby son when he was born! How about that! She remained my tutor until 1996, when my family and I moved to England.

I began composing music as far back as the age of 6. I of course composed nonsense tunes and not really serious songs. I just liked fooling around with the keys on the piano and making up silly little tunes to try to compose my own songs. Now, friends, I cannot at all get the hang of reading or writing braille music. I just cannot make myself to learn music writing what so ever. I can only compose tunes and lyrics. Braille music is very difficult for me for some reason. When I was 7 years old, I composed a song for my mother, which I called, The Wedding Song. Now, being a professional that I am at last now, I know you should never copy a tune or lyric when composing a new song. Now, with The Wedding Song, I copied the introduction of an old Jim Reeves Afrikaans tune which I fell in love with. The song I copied The Wedding Song from is called, Tahiti. Well, needless to say, I played that song over and over and my family loved it. I had a ball. Music, to me, is the best theropy and medicine for everybody. It is imposible not to like music as it is so important in our day to day lives, in my humble opinion.

I started going for piano lessons in Brampton, Ontario, where I learned classical music. Classical has never been my favorite and I stopped learning classical at the age of 18, when I realized it was a waste of time and wanted to pursue country music as my hobby which to this day, is my number 1 love.

I learned a song when I first went for piano lessons in Brampton, and I finally got the urge to play at a competition in the summer of 1992. I played a classical tune called, Minuet In F Major. I actually can still play it to this day! I won a trophy and oh friends and neighbours, it was a dream come true and a huge thrill. I of course wasn't humble enough to be thankful, but I can remember playing with the trophy like it was a toy. My music career, from that day forward, has been a career that is continuing to this very day.

End Of Chapter 2.




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