This past weekend I has a blast! On Friday, I went to the balloon glow event in the park next to campus with a group of people from my floor. That evening required a lot of walking, and walking long distances or even moderate distances seems to set off my vocal tics especially.
I met another person who I think might end up being one of my good friends. I’m going to call her April. April is very nice and doesn’t seem to be uncomfortable with my tics at all since I’ve explained them to her. I explained to her that I have Tourette Syndrome and what it is when I was walking with her at the balloon glow, and she seemed pretty chill about it.
She and another girl I was walking with didn’t shy away from asking questions! I always appreciate when people ask questions rather than just saying “oh” and being awkwardly silent. They asked me if I can feel a tic coming, if it gets annoying sometimes, and generally seemed to be accepting and positive about it.
Since then, I’ve been hanging out with April and the other girl who I explained my tics to on the night of the balloon glow (who I will call Gretchen) quite a bit. They’re both very nice people who I can see myself being even closer friends with in the future. April also told me that her younger brother has a form of Asperger’s, and at one point he had some tics with his neck and pulling at his collar, so this is not her first exposure to tics and neurological differences — which always helps!
On Saturday, a group from my floor took the Metro to Target, which was fun but took a long time and was once again a lot of walking! Luckily, both April and Gretchen were there and I got to spend more time getting to know them and they got to spend more time getting used to my tics.
Then Saturday night, I went out to dinner with a friend of mine from the Nemrov group (Laura) for her birthday dinner! That was really fun, and it was nice to get off campus and hang out with Laura, who I don’t get to see as often as the people who I live with on my floor.
Last night, we had a floor event called Community Night with our floor as well. Goldie (my awesome RA) and Viv (my other awesome RA) did a great job planning the night. We played games to help us get to know the other people on our floor better, and guess what???? Our group won!!!! I even got to be in a group with April, which I really appreciated.
I felt way more comfortable about my tics with April around, and even though I was doing a lot of vocal tics throughout the night, it didn’t really bother me all that much because April’s nonchalant attitude about it made me feel way more relaxed.
During a section where we had to do some writing, though, I kept throwing my pen. Then later in the night I ended up throwing my room key on the ground as well. Well that’s a new tic….gotta love new tics.
Then we had to go outside on a scavenger hunt. We were running all over the place, it was dark, and then it started raining really, really hard, and there was lightning, too. I got soooo soaked, and just my luck I was wearing a white shirt, which got completely soaked all the way though, and I was wearing shoes made out of recycled paper!
The rain and the fact that we were running all over the place made me tic a lot more, but April was really helpful because she stopped with me when my leg started cramping up and when my tics started getting bad. Even though it was crazy and even though I was ticcing a bunch, it was still really fun. I sure won’t forget my first freshmen community floor night!
April and I bailed out early because we were so soaked, and when I got back to the dorm, my RA Goldie was there. She saw how wet we both were and hugged us even though we were soaking wet! Then Goldie went outside to stand in the rain so she would be wet, too, lol. She really is a great RA!
It all paid off in the end when we won the activity, though! We won a trip to get frozen yogurt with our RAs, which I’m really looking forward to! :)