Celebrating Talents and Abilities of Highly Gifted Children and Adults

In The Spotlight - Ordinary People Doing Extraordinary Things

Adrian Flores DanDan Tran Dennis Coelho Gary Raffanelli Lexi Lanni Joe Sharino Michael J. Vaughn Stefanie Tolan

Identifying the Gifted

Einstein was four years old before he could speak and seven before he could read.

Isaac Newton did poorly in grade school.

When Thomas Edison was a boy, his teachers told him he was too stupid to learn anything.

F.W.Woolworth got a job in a dry goods store when he was 21. But his employers would not let him wait on a customer because he "Didn't have enough sense."

A newspaper editor fired Walt Disney because he had "No good ideas"

Caruso's music teacher told him "You can't sing, you have no voice at all."

Leo Tolstoy flunked out of college.

Verner Von Braun flunked 9th grade algebra.

Admiral Richard E. Byrd had been retired from the navy, as, "Unfit for service" Until he flew over both poles.

Louis Pasteur was rated as mediocre in chemistry when he attended the Royal College

Abraham Lincoln entered The Black Hawk War as a captain and came out a private

Fred Waring was once rejected from high school chorus.

 Winston Churchill failed the sixth grade.

And so did my very dear nameless friend...

When Hope is Forgotten

I met him near the end of 2003. At 44 years old he had musical gifts beyond logic. He was the best singer I had ever heard. His golden hands had their way with any instrument he touched. He's not just good. He's Special. But there's only one problem. He lost that little boy, who was full of hope and a dream to reach for the stars. And beyond that he was so very smart. He wanted to be a doctor at one time. But in so many ways he was lost before he ever got to high school.

He's Not Alone

As a small child, I sat in the back of a classroom timid and afraid to show I was smart. Academically, I was a statistic that got buried a long time ago. And we'll never know how far I could have gone.  The world is full of adults just like me and my friend, walking around, saying their coulda - woulda - shoulda's....

Buried Talents

I wanted to be a dancer. I remember that about me. Before moving out here to the west coast, I had lost that part of me. I was a mother. I was a daughter. I was a wife. And I did all these things to the best of my ability. But there was always a part of me missing. And it took me almost 40 years to finally figure out who that was and find her again. I finally remembered a long time ago, I was on a stage. Now, I remember so well the black leotard with sequin accents and top hat and the tap shoes. And the ballet shoes. I felt more at home in these shoes. And I was dancing. The amazing talent in me was evident then.

Little Girl Found

In 2001, I was at a Christmas Party. And as I was dancing all alone on the dance floor, I sparked the interest of the DJ. We talked that night and the next thing I knew, I was back on a stage again. And that's when I found "her" again. 

It's a Leap of Faith

How did I reach back inside to find the child I left behind? Actually, she found me. The moment I got back on that stage I knew I had to be there. I knew I'd found the part of me that was missing. At that moment, I decided I won't ever let anything or anyone take that little girl away from me again.

Somewhere along the line I learned that I'm good. I'm really good. And I can't beat myself up over what has passed me by before. But I will do my very best to strive for my personal best. Cha-Cha, Rhumba, Swing, Salsa...I love it all!

And there was more to find....


Who would have thought I have a brain? School? I hated it. Homework? It gave me the hives. I was smart enough to get by with a C even though I could have done so much better. Today, I'm in college and loving it. I am proving that it's never too late.

And just for fun, I make jewelry too. I get compliments all the time. Maybe I'll sell it

Give your hidden child a chance to shine! Don't be afraid! It's never too late!

For More Information About Gifted Adults:

Please see Stephanie Tolan's article on Discovering the Gifted Ex-Child