April 13, 2009

Life's a Twitch

I have decided to write about this now and not hide it away. I noticed some eyeblinking and twitching as far back as last April/May but chose to ignore it. I had always had weird ways and small tics, most of which I have been able to hide from people over the years. I did not take much notice but around the same time came my excess energy and hyperactivity (all this had always been present but now this was getting worse) My heart was beating faster and all I wanted to do was exercise to calm me down.

Over the past few months my tics and twitches have got worse and now I make noises as well. I have a shoulder shrug, blinking, grunting and random words like "bike" "box"

I am now under a consultant neurologist and have obviously been diagnosed with a neurological tic disorder. If I was under 18 this would be called Tourettes Syndrome or TS. However as I am an adult it remains unamed although over the last few years there have been many mores cases of adult onset Tourettes. It could also be a result of a nasty strep throat infection I may have had as a child. Whatever, it is irrelevant as I struggle cope with this condition.

I have the most wonderful friends around me who are accepting (and probably used to me being quirky). I also have a wonderul family...but going out to restaurants, cinema and theatre can be daunting and nerve racking.

My job as a teacher bizzarly is the least worrying, well the working with children bit. The children are so accepting but I do worry what the parents may think and would reslish the opportunity to be open and honest.

I have over the last three days been reading a book by Brad Cohen, a teacher in Atlanta, Georgia who suffers from TS. He has inspired and empowerd me to be who I am and to be proud of it.

He says he explains the disorder to the children by saying that there is something in his brain that causes him to make weird noises and funny faces. He then asks them if there is something in their brains they can't control. He talks about blinking and the children then seem to have some understanding.

The difference is that Brad has suffered from 12 years old and I have started at 45. Luckily have confidences that I have acquired over the years.

Oh yes and the misconception that all TS sufferers swear! Only 10% of TS sufferers do!

The book Front of the Class has been made into a Hallmark movie

Here is Brad giving one of his motivational speeches.

Anyway I will continue to cope with humour...quite fancy one of Brad's "Twitch and Shout" Camps...would be fun!!

Posted by laura at 11:46 AM | Comments (29)