Faces of Long Island celebrates the uniqueness of everyday Long Islanders. In their own words, they tell us about their life experiences, challenges and triumphs. Newsday launched this social media journey into the human experience to shine a light on the diverse people of this wonderful place we call home.

‘Never give up, even if you have a disability.’


“I struggle with learning disabilities still to this day. When I was younger, I was diagnosed with low tone and low muscle, which basically means I didn’t develop quickly. I developed slowly. My speech and my body were not at the level that most kids are.

“When I was younger, I was not ahead of my classes. Everybody else was at the top of the class. I was below them. So, I had to get extra help. I had to go to speech therapy to help with my speech. I had extra time with a trainer just to get my muscles going. I had to catch up with other kids in class. I would say I started seeing therapists around first grade or kindergarten age.

Always ask for help. No one’s going to get mad at you for asking stupid questions.

“For my learning abilities, I would go to another person or another teacher and have like an hour or a 10-minute session with them, just to focus on each skill.

“But when I went to high school, I did not have that. I had to learn how to speak properly and study by myself and how to figure out how learn and remember information in different ways.

“In high school, if the notes were on the board, I would take them twice just so I remember them in my head. Also, I would read back the notes to myself to make sure I remember it.

“Throughout college, I would do the same, and I would always ask questions just to double-check if I was right or not. I made sure I did my tests on time. College was great. I learned a lot from my peers.

“My dream is one day to be a front desk manager in a hotel or a front desk person at a restaurant. I’m currently looking around for job opportunities.

“It’s also been my inspiration like to write, even though I didn’t take a course on that. I make blog posts about a Hulu show called ‘Tell Me Lies.’ I run a fan page called @tellmeliesfanpage22. I always look at shows and think how I would do this or what would be my review on it.

“Even if you have a disability, never give up. I would highly recommend that you work on it every day to make sure that you’re not behind and just to look forward to the future because it’s getting better every day. Always ask for help. No one’s going to get mad at you for asking stupid questions. Just ask for help and they’’ll give it to you.”

Interviewed by Victoria Bell