Wonder by Stephen Chbosky (2017)

When I was on my trip back to Manila, from Calapan a few weeks ago. I rode the Supercat by ‘To Go Travel’. The movie that was played on that day was “Wonder” directed by Stephen Chbosky, based from the book of the same name by RJ Palacio.

This story is about a ten-year-old boy, named August Pullman suffering from severe birth defects, including mandibulo-facial dysostosis and a cleft palate, which have left him vulnerable to other people’s perception of him and low self esteem. His parents then decided to enroll him at Beecher Prep after years of homeschooling him.

Mandibulo-facial dysostosis, also known as Treacher Collins Syndrome is a rare disease characterized by underdeveloped facial bones and a very small lower jaw and chin, called Micrognathia; based from UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital.

While the Cleft Palate is a birth defect that results when the roof of the mouth, called the palate fails to form completely during early fetal development. This causes a gap, called a cleft, in the palate. Babies with a cleft palate usually must be bottle fed, with breast milk or formula, using special nipples. Surgery to repair the cleft is performed of about 10 months of age or when the child begins to make sounds of speech. Most children will also need orthodontic treatment with braces during early adolescence as based from University of California.

This child named August was the youngest son of Mr and Mrs Pullman. He also had a sister named Via and a dog named Daisy. When he entered the Prep school, he obviously experienced bullying and he was being stared at by most of his peers, due to his deformity. But since he was home schooled by his mom, he had an edge with the science subject. He loves Star wars, and he also had this astronaut like helmet to hide his face every time he wants whenever his outside the house or inside his home, but not inside the school premises. But what I love about him is that he loves Halloween more than Christmas, because that’s where he can be himself by wearing costumes during the trick or treat. Moreover, he later on discovered his true friends who supported him in his school.

All kids have fears. But some kids worry a lot more than others. It’s always painful to watch a child suffer from anxiety, but it’s especially difficult if you’re not sure whether he’s worrying too much or might need help. The difference between normal worry and an anxiety disorder is severity. Although feeling anxious is a natural reaction to a stressful or dangerous situation, a child may need help if his anxiety is out of proportion, if it persists or if it interferes with his life and development.

For a 10 year old kid, his fears are mostly the following: fear of throwing up at school, fear of being rejected by his peers, fear of school failure, fear of sickness, fear of being home alone, fear of bad guys and ghosts and fear of dying.