The future

Hey everyone, this first appeared on my Life’s A Twitch blog site back in July, but I wanted to share it here, too. Thanks for reading!

I’m kind of in a rough spot right now. I used to always have everything planned out. I knew my future and I knew what I wanted. Now that I’m getting closer to college, I’m not sure what I want to do anymore. It’s really affecting me. I like to have everything planned out right away. It’s part of my OCD. I live about three years in the future constantly. I can’t see anything in front of me.

I’m going into junior year of high school and I feel like I’m starting sophomore year of college. I do not see a computer in front of me. I see a small laptop in a tiny dorm room. I don’t see three large windows next to me. I see a loft bed and tons of textbooks. I can’t live in the present. It’s not how I work.

I need to live so far ahead that I know everything is going to be OK. I am going to be 16 years old in two months and I do not know how to drive. I have not even considered Drivers Ed in the past because of my Tourette’s. I have driven before on a few back roads, and it was terrifying. I kept taking my hands off the wheel and my eyes off the road to tic. Driving is a sort of trigger for tics.

As you already know, I don’t live in the present. Three years from now, in college, I need to be able to know how to drive. I can’t drive at the moment and I need to be able to. It is all a part of the plan. If I look farther in the future, I need to drive to my job, right?

All of you know it is true. Everyone has to do it. Go to college, get a job, get married, buy a house, have kids, retire, die. This is how life works. I want to go to college, get a job, get married, and have kids, but how can I? My Tourette’s is in the way of everything.

I know a lot of people with Tourette’s say they can drive, but I can’t. I’ve tried. If I can’t drive, I can’t conform to a normal life. Maybe I’m not meant to do things the normal way.

My Tourettes has been really bad lately. I don’t know how I’m getting through it, but I am. I haven’t been depressed for a while now, thankfully, but suicide has crossed my mind. It crosses every person’s mind though, doesn’t it?

What isn’t so normal is that today I got really stressed out about my future and then it started blurring. I didn’t want to have a plan anymore. It all seemed to be falling apart. How in the world could I accomplish anything I wanted to do? What did I even want to do?

I started planning a suicide. I think a lot of people do that, though. Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe I’m part of the not so many that actually stress out to the point that they start planning their own demise. I was so sure that tonight I was going to swallow a bunch of pills and it would all be gone. Everything would be gone. I would be gone. I wouldn’t have to worry about anything anymore. I wouldn’t have to tic. I wouldn’t get depressed from time to time. I wouldn’t be planning everything in my future, because I wouldn’t have a future. It sounded so nice to be done with everything.

Even so, there are so many repercussions from a suicide. I’m sure my family would be devastated. I’m sure my friends would be upset. A lot of times when the thoughts come to me, I think that no one loves me and that no one would care if I was gone.

Today the thoughts did not come. It was nothing like the times I was depressed out of my mind. It was not like when I felt worthless. It was different. I was stressed out of my mind and upset. I wanted to be gone. When I was able to calm down, I was still thinking about a suicide, but after putting everything into perspective, I decided against it.

I still don’t really know what my future holds, and that scares me. I like control. I like being able to know where everything and everyone is and everything that is going to happen. I don’t like that my future is shaky and blurry and that I can’t see into it. I don’t have a definite future, and it’s so frightening. I feel stressed, not in control, and unhappy, but most of all, I feel scared.

True life stories can be an inspiration

Hi everyone! It turns out that summer has negatively affected how much I write. I have been trying to clear out room on my schedule to write.

I recently watched a show called “True Life: Embarassing Medical Conditions.” Tourette Syndrome was one of the two conditions featured on the show. The girl, Allyssa, was quite an inspiration. She has tics that are more life-threatening than mine, including holding her breath, fainting and choking herself.

She takes life a day at a time, and she is quite an inspiration to me. She seemed completely fine with herself and her disorder. She was happy to have her friends laugh at her. I’m not sure why she enjoyed this, but she liked to make a joke of it. Sometimes, I enjoy a few lighthearted jokes with my very close friends, but not all the time. This girl can drive even with her fainting tic! I thought this was amazing.

I always think that I will surely get in a car crash if I get behind a steering wheel. With my rapid and intense blinking tic, I don’t think I will ever be able to safely drive. I don’t want to risk my life and the lives of the people on the road and in my vehicle. So, for now I stick to not driving. I could have taken Driver’s Ed in March, but I decided against it.

Allyssa made me think that maybe I can drive, since her tics are more severe than mine and she drives quite easily. She says she just concentrates really hard on driving. I feel like I would have to have music playing in order to occupy my Tourette part of the brain. Tourette is the lack of production of a sufficient amount of dopamine, and music increases dopamine, so I guess that is one of the reasons music helps. I always have to listen to music in order to do my homework each night.

If Allyssa ever happens to read this (small chance), I would like to thank her bunches for helping me believe in myself. If you have Tourette, join in the community, look up our videos and read our blogs. It’s good to know you’re not alone. Lots of love!

Just because I have Tourette doesn’t mean I can’t drive just like you

People sometimes ask, “How can you drive with TS?” My response sometimes is, “Just because I have TS doesn’t mean I can’t drive. When I am consintrated enough on something my tics don’t occur as often.”

Other times I just say, “First, I put the keys in the ignition, then I put the car in drive, and finally I press the gas pedal.” This is usually to my friends and relatives, though, and then they laugh.

Oh, and don’t forget that it’s Tourette Syndrome Awareness Month through June 15! Why not help celebrate our gift and this month by purchasing a Disability Pin? Find out how over at my Definite Possibilities site? Thanks!

You can do anything … even drive!

Hi everyone! My name is Emma, I’m 14 years old, and I have Tourette Syndrome. I can be a bit of a worrier since I also have Anxiety Disorder. I have pondered many things and also worried about many things in my life. I’m really anxious about the things I can and cannot do.

I always try really hard to do the things my brain tells me I can’t do. One of the things I’m not sure I’ll be able to do with Tourettes is drive. This worries me a lot since I am going to start Driver’s Ed in March.

What if I get one of those old, crabby teachers and they don’t have any patience with me to start with? What will I do if I have to tic? I have to be in the car for at least two hours! Those Driver Ed cars are kind of small. Will I have any leg room?

When I have to drive in the car, and I have to straighten my legs, what will I do? Floor it? What about when I need to squat? Take my feet off the pedals? When I need to blink real hard? Not look at the road? When I have to scrunch up my arms? To clap? To rub my wrists together? Will I just take my hands off the wheel? Continue reading