Nancy Hawkins Meyer


Brain Child

When Nancy was two, she quickly memorized a picture book her aunts were reading to her. When Nancy's mother came to pick her up, the aunts convinced her that the toddler could read. "She's a genius!" they exclaimed, hiding their smiles as Nancy turned each page and recited the text.

Turns out she really was a genius, with an IQ level that bought her membership to the Mensa Organization as an adult. But as a child, she felt a lot of pressure to live up to her intelligence and to be the perfect student.

One year in high school, she'd had enough of being the "good girl." She skipped classes so often she says it's a wonder the teachers even recognized her face. When her parents insisted she try harder, she found it extremely liberating to declare, "It's too hard. I can't do it." She found secret pleasure in receiving F's that term, but after a summer in summer school, she decided it wasn't worth it and went back to getting straight A's the next year.

My Mother's
Wondrous Mind