English 341: It’s Like This

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Out of My Mind Make

Out of My Mind Make

I read the book, “Out of My Mind”, by Sharon Draper. The girl in the book had cerebral palsy. Cerebral palsy is affects body movement and muscle coordination. Because of this disorder, Melody, was not able to move, talk, or eat by herself. I tried to imagine a life where I wasn’t able to do tasks that I consider to be simple now. It was hard for me to even try to fathom how hard it must be to basically not have control over your own body the way you want to have control over it. I wanted to put myself in Melody’s shoes, so, I tried not speaking for a bit to see how hard it would be for her to communicate with other people. In the book, she had a communication board that had letters and some words that she might be important for her to use throughout the day on it. I made my own communication board for this experiment and this is what happened.


I didn’t speak for about 2 hours on Friday. This was probably one of the hardest things I have ever done. I am a talkative person, so relying on my communication board to say what I needed to say was so restricting. I could definitely feel Melody’s frustration. I hung out with my friends that day, it was so weird for me because I tried to jump into their conversations, but the communication board was so limited, I eventually would just sit there and listen to everyone else talk. We went to eat and I had to order with my communication board, and that was different. The cashier just looked at me like I was crazy, but I was able to order the food I wanted.


In conclusion, I think this was a great thing to try out. It really helped me understand what Melody was going through a little bit more. I know, not speaking does not even come anywhere close in comparison to actually having cerebral palsy, but to not be able to speak was definitely a challenge for me. I think I take my ability to speak and move everyday the way I want to for granted. This made me a little bit more thankful that I am able to do these things everyday.


Below is my communication board.

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