I am Aisling. I am 19 years old, and I live in Derby, England.
My TS was diagnosed when I was 18, and I didn’t have any obvious tics until I was 17. My tics began as a twitch in my right shoulder, which has never really gone. Other motor tics are now making faces, sticking my tongue out, my body jolting, pinching or hitting myself and compulsively rubbing the skin between my fingers.
My first vocal tic was just sniffing but has now expanded into screaming, stuttering, saying words such as “Weasels!” and sometimes palilalia and echolalia.
The hardest part of having TS for me is knowing how far I can push myself without going too far. I also find it hard when I realise can’t do some things as well as I used to be able to before I had tics, such as concentrate!
I really enjoy drama and am doing that as part of my degree at university now. I also really like creative writing, which I haven’t done as much since I left school. One of my favourite things to do is baking as well.
I think people should know that TS isn’t as simple, scary or extreme as the media seem to portray it, and most people with TS are able to live normal lives. Once people understand this, hopefully they will learn about what TS really is, and meet the person beneath the syndrome!