These are not in any particular order! I just wrote them down as I thought of them. These are the top 5 moments that relate to Tourette’s that happened during the Camp Twitch and Shout counselor reunion weekend. Here’s No. 4:
On Saturday night, the same counselor who would respond to my “No” tic decided to make dinner for all of us since she likes to cook. So we all went to the grocery store to get the ingredients. On the way to the grocery store, the music in the car accidentally got turned up really loud.
One of the other counselors we were with who does have Tourette’s is very sensitive to loud noise because it always sets his tics off. So as soon as the music got turned up, he started ticcing pretty severely. When we parked in the grocery store parking lot he was still ticcing a lot, so we waited a few minutes before going in.
He started to insist that we not wait in the car for him, though, so we went in together and he was still ticcing a lot. It was so sweet how one of the other counselors (the one who does not have Tourette’s and who would make light of my “No” tic) said “Tell me what I can do” to him to try to help in any way she could.
She is so incredibly caring. She doesn’t have Tourette’s, had no idea what Tourette’s even was before she came to camp 5 years ago, and she is such a strong Tourette’s advocate. She has two bumper stickers on the back of her car, one says “Tourette’s Syndrome Awareness” and the other says “Camp Twitch and Shout,” and she even has a Tourette’s tattoo.
Anyway, back to the story… when we went into the grocery store, the other counselor was still ticcing badly, which made me start ticcing badly, too. The other people in the grocery store didn’t say anything, but both of us were going up and down the isles jerking and making noises like crazy!
I was doing a high-pitched noise that kind of sounds like a squeak or something like that while at the same time stomping my foot on the ground really hard. They could probably tell I was nervous about being in the grocery store, so two of them — the guy who was originally ticcing and the girl who makes comments after my “No” tic — made me feel better by saying that I looked like I was throwing the most adorable little temper tantrum and that my tics were so cute.
I would usually be so nervous ticcing this much in a grocery store, but surrounded by these amazing people from camp I felt so safe and accepted.
Look for No. 3 tomorrow! And in case you missed it, here is No. 5.