Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Winter Break Update

Hey guys! Sorry that I haven't posted in a little while, but there hasn't been a whole lot to post about really. This will just be a little update about whats going on in my life right now. First of all, I am on winter break which I am loving! I get almost a full month of winter break since I am in college now and that's about the longest winter break I've ever had. So far i've been on winter break for a week. I've been sleeping a lot better because I have less anxiety and less tics when I am at home, but i've still been having a fair amount of stomach issues due to anxiety even though i'm at home. I do have a party on Friday at one of my best friend from high school's house. Even though she is my best friend, I haven't been to her house since sophmore year because she lives so far away and driving out to her house takes so long so it's very exciting for me to be going over to her house again.

I'm excited to see my other high school friends and to be at her house because it'll be just like old times and it will probably bring back a lot of old feelings and memories. Some of the memories it brings up will be of wonderful times, but of course some will be more unpleasant memories of my high school days. I'm not really going to get into that though.

I have to get my wisdom teeth out on the 10th of January which I am really nervous about. I will only have 4 days to recover before I have to go back to school and I'm really hoping I won't still look like a chipmunk when I go back to see my college friends. It makes me feel better that i'm seeing such a great oral surgeon though. My mom said today that she trusts him with her life and he did my mom's dental implant and she had to go under general anesthetic and she came out just fine. I've also had 12 teeth removed previously surgically so I know i'm find under general anesthetic so I really shouldn't be all that nervous. I think writing about this is helping me calm down. I'm sure I will be fine even if I am a little nervous.

I also see my OCD therapist tomorrow at 10am. My OCD is probably the best it's been in 3 or 4 years but i'm still on a maintenance program with my therapist to make sure it stays that way. I'm actually glad I will be talking with her though because it's really the first time I will be able to say that my OCD isn't really interfering with my life that much right now. Sure I still have a whole list of things I can't do because of my OCD and things I have to avoid because of my OCD and things I have to do because of my OCD but I really still feel as if it's not a huge problem for me right now because of all the rituals and compulsions I knocked out over the summer in the summer intensive program and it's just been getting better as the year has been going on.

I only wash my hands after going to the bathroom really even though I still wash in a very ritualized way and for more time than most people do. I can do my laundry and touch dirty clothes. I touch all door knobs besides bathroom door knobs (and even some of those I have been able to touch). and I could keep listing all the things I can do now and all the things that are better because my treatment for my OCD has been successful to a large extent but I won't keep listing because that would take way too long.

Thanks for reading! I know it wasn't the most exciting post, but I will post more exciting posts later I keep going forward. Also, if you follow me here on my blog and enjoy reading my blog posts be sure to follow my facebook page about TS and OCD which you can come "like" and read by clicking on this link: http://www.facebook.com/pages/A-Little-Bit-Different-Tourettes-Syndrome/164459540340080

Saturday, December 8, 2012

My New Therapist For Anxiety at School and Suggestions for Anyone who has Trouble Sleeping

Well I promised I would post about my new therapist I saw for anxiety at school so that's what this post is going to be about.

I was really kind of nervous going to see her because she's a therapist on campus through student health services and for some reason that made me nervous. Besides my initial nerves though, it really went well! She is so nice and I really like her so far. She gave me some really good strategies for dealing with my anxiety and sleeping problems such as focusing on deep breathing and focusing on monitoring anxiety  provoking thoughts.

I've already tried using some of the strategies she suggested and so far they really help! On Friday I had two tests back to back and I did a lot of practice with the deep breathing she taught me before the tests and while I was talking the tests and it really helped me to feel more relaxed and less anxious overall.

Another neat thing she is having me do is to try to help with my sleeping problem is that before bed I write down three things that happened during the day that I am grateful for. When you do this kind of memory recall it apparently activates the frontal lobe and while the frontal lobe is activated, the part of your brain that creates panic and anxiety (the amygdala) can't be activated simultaneously. I've only tried this a few times, but it's actually been making a difference with helping me sleep so far!

So if you have trouble sleeping due to anxiety or tics or whatever, try this tactic of writing down three things that happened during the day that you are grateful for. It might feel weird at first, but trust me it will help!

Then when you're in bed, try putting your hands on your stomach and pretending there is a balloon in your stomach. When you breathe in and breathe out, you have to feel the balloon in your stomach inflating and deflating slowly and try not to move your chest up and down at all. Count to 4 when you breath in, pause for 2, count to 4 when you breathe out, then pause for two again to make sure your breathing is slow and regular and it will really help!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Seeing a new therapist for my anxiety

Hey guys! One thing I really haven't written about on here yet is about my general anxiety. I guess I was busy blogging about Tourette's and OCD! Anyway I have a lot of generalized anxiety since I do have GAD (Generalized Anxiety Disorder) and lately my anxiety has been getting worse here in college with all the new stress. I worry about a lot of things on an almost constant basis such as my friends, my grades, my family, and my own health and sleep. Lately since i'm in college i've had a lot of anxiety about friends and grades in particular.

I worry and am anxious about if my new friends really do like me and really consider me to be one of their friends. I worry about if they think my tics are annoying or if they wish I would stop but can't say anything to me because they know I have Tourette's. I worry if they will get fed up with my tics and eventually will decide they don't want to put up with it anymore. I worry that they don't view me as they view other people but instead view me as a person with a disorder/disability. Even though I really have no proof that they think these things and these thoughts just come from my own head I still worry about them a lot. I also worry that they don't think I'm mature enough or interesting enough and will eventually decide they just don't like my personality.

I also worry about my grades and homework and studying. Sometimes just doing my homework causes so much anxiety that I avoid doing it and just surf the internet or working on the documentary or being on facebook. I know, that's really bad. I do it eventually, but I don't spend as much time on it as I could have and I don't try as hard as I know I could. I know I could be studying harder and doing more work but its just too anxiety provoking for me. Even though I'm at a very prestigious college and am getting pretty decent grades, I know I am capable of even more but I just don't want to push myself that far right now because of my anxiety.

All of this anxiety makes me feel really tense all the time. Sometimes I feel like I can't breathe very well because my throat is so tight and the muscles around my throat, face, and neck are so tight. I clench my jaw really tight as well which I'm not sure if this is a tic or a result of my anxiety. I've also been having a lot of trouble sleeping lately because of my anxiety. I don't want to try to fall asleep because the process of falling asleep causes so much anxiety for me so I stay up until 12 or 12:30 just avoiding turning off the lights and putting my lap top away. Then once I do start trying to sleep my tics get really bad from being anxious, I worry that I am bothering other people in the dorm, I worry that I won't get enough sleep and that i'll be tired the next day, I trash in my bed and can't stop my brain from thinking in circles about things that make me anxious because there is nothing to do except lie there. It takes me between 2 and 3 hours to actually go to sleep and then once I am asleep I have these awful nightmares. Luckily I usually stay asleep until the morning though.

Then the next day i'm tired and take a nap but when I take a nap I don't have any anxiety about sleeping. I really enjoy the nap but never am able to enjoy sleeping at night.

So anyway the point of all this really was to say that I'm going to be seeing a new therapist/counselor here at my college specifically for my anxiety. I'm actually kind of excited. I haven't had great luck with therapists in the past and I've really only had three therapists that i've actually liked. Well for most people that might sound like a lot but for someone like me who has seen more therapists in their life that they can count that's not very good. Well maybe I actually can count....lets see...I think i've seen 14 therapists in some form or another throughout my life! Wow that's really a lot. I guess I didn't realize I've seen that many therapists in my life. I'm going to have to do a whole different blog post now on all the different therapists i've seen and what I liked about that/didn't like/etc.

Anyway each time I see a new therapist I have high hopes that I'm really going to like them and connect with them and they're really going to understand me like no one else ever has. Maybe I get my hopes up too high really. I haven't had that therapist yet who has changed my life and even though I don't think this new therapist is going to change my life or anything, I am just hoping that she will be someone who will help me lessen all this anxiety i'm dealing with and maybe as an extra bonus she will really understand me and at least be someone I can talk to openly and give me some positive feedback when i'm talking to her. I hope she's nice and I hope she will be able to understand all this stuff I deal with on a level that my peers and parents can't understand.

I'm still seeing a therapist off campus for my OCD but I only see her once a month now on a maintenance program just to make sure i'm maintaining the gains i've made with my exposure therapy but right now i'm not pushing forward with my OCD because in my opinion my OCD is pretty under control right now for the situation i'm in here at college. I know i'll have to do more work with exposure therapy in the future but right now i'm just focusing on college.

I see the new therapist here on campus for the first time this Thursday at 9am. I even am getting up at like 8:30 to go see her so that tells you something. I don't get up at that time of the morning in college like ever but i'm willing to do it for this. I will let you guys know how it goes with her and I will probably do a post about all the various therapists i've had and my experiences with them. Wow that will be a long post. Maybe i'll break it up into a part 1, part 2 kind of thing.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

More Tourette's Awareness Pictures!!

So lately i've been editing and making Tourette's awareness photo's for people on facebook who send in a picture of their child and a quote they would like me to use with it. These are more of the pictures I have made! I think they are pretty wonderful and I have been getting a lot of fantastic feedback! Feel free to share any of these pictures on facebook or anywhere else! Also if you want me to make one like this for you or your child simply go to my facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/A-Little-Bit-Different-Tourettes-Syndrome/164459540340080?ref=hl and send me a message that includes a picture of you or your child and a quote you would like me to use with it and I will make an awareness picture for you! Hope you enjoy the ones I have made :)














Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Thanksgiving Break and a Tourette's Story about School :)

Hey guys! I am now on Thanksgiving break and it's so nice to be home! Home cooked meals, sleeping my with puppy, seeing my high school friends! What more could I ask for? So, i'm very happy to be at home, and my friend from high school will be coming over so she can meet my puppy and so we can catch up! I'm excited! And I get to eat Thanksgiving food and it's my birthday in just 7 days!!! Yay!

Anyway, besides all that I wanted to share with you guys a little Tourette's moment I had the other week. At my college, a bunch of Indian dance groups put on a giant Diwali performance in our main theater on campus and I went with a bunch of my friends from my floor to see the performance.  The performance was excellent and I really really enjoyed it! It was 3 hours though and I was holding back my vocal tics, so my motor tics got pretty bad. Luckily I was sitting next to my closest friends in college who totally understand so they didn't even turn their heads when my motor tic where I hit myself in the chest and arm started acting up.

After the Diwali performance was over, we all went to eat dinner on campus. Half way through our dinner, a guy who I didn't know joined us. He knew one of my friends who we were eating dinner with, but I hadn't met him before. I, of course, was still doing my chest hitting tic though. After about 10 minutes of sitting with us he asked me "Why are you hitting yourself in the chest?". I really didn't know the guy and I probably wasn't going to see him again really so I tried to brush the question off without telling him I had Tourette's. He was persistent though and wasn't very happy with my non-Tourette's explanation so he then asked me "Is it like a dominance thing or something?" and then proceeded to imitate my tic.

Lol, a dominance thing! That's probably one of the most obscure things a person has thought my tics to be. Sure I get people who think I am cold, or sneezing, or have a cold, or am just nervous, but i've never really had someone ask me if I had some type of dominance complex before. Lol, I didn't want him thinking I was that weird. I think having Tourette's is much better than having a dominance complex that causes you to hit yourself in the chest. So I just gave in and told him that it was a tic and that I have Tourette's. His response to this was "oh" and then he changed the subject. Lol, I think he felt bad.

Other than that I also made a video for my new puppy Brandy!  I made a video similar to this one when our dog Diva passed away, so my mom really wanted me to make one for welcoming Brandy to our family as well. Enjoy the video! I think it's pretty cute!!!


Sunday, November 18, 2012

More Tourette's Awareness Pictures!

So lately i've been editing and making Tourette's awareness photo's for people on facebook who send in a picture of their child and a quote they would like me to use with it. These are more of the pictures I have made! I think they are pretty wonderful and I have been getting a lot of fantastic feedback! Feel free to share any of these pictures on facebook or anywhere else! Also if you want me to make one like this for you or your child simply go to my facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/A-Little-Bit-Different-Tourettes-Syndrome/164459540340080?ref=hl and send me a message that includes a picture of you or your child and a quote you would like me to use with it and I will make an awareness picture for you! Hope you enjoy the ones I have made :)










Thursday, November 15, 2012

Tourette's Awareness Pictures!

So lately i've been editing and making Tourette's awareness photo's for people on facebook who send in a picture of their child and a quote they would like me to use with it. These are the results! I think they are pretty wonderful and I have been getting a lot of fantastic feedback! Feel free to share any of these pictures on facebook or anywhere else! Also if you want me to make one like this for you or your child simply go to my facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/A-Little-Bit-Different-Tourettes-Syndrome/164459540340080?ref=hl and send me a message that includes a picture of you or your child and a quote you would like me to use with it and I will make an awareness picture for you! Hope you enjoy the ones I have made :)














Sunday, November 11, 2012

The Classic Monk Moment

Okay, so if any of you guys have watched Monk the TV show or the movie, then you know what this post is most likely going to be about. For those of you who have never watched Monk, it's an amazing and hilarious  show about a extremely talented detective named Mr. Monk who has obsessive compulsive disorder!  If you haven't watched it, you should really watch the re-runs or watch it on netflix! The show mixes a perfect amount of clever humor with pretty accurate information about OCD and with enticing drama. I started watching Monk even before I really knew I had OCD, throughout my diagnosis, and although the show was canceled I sill go back and watch episodes from time to time.

Anyway, I had what you would call "a classic Monk moment" last night. In my opinion a classic Monk moment is an OCD moment that for the most part merges a slight OCD tendency or a larger OCD tendency with a good amount of humor. 

Anyway, so I hope you enjoy my classic Monk moment story!  I was talking with a group of four of my friends on my floor and a guy on my floor who is a big jokster unzipped the front pocket on my friend's coat that she was wearing. I didn't really know it was going to bother my OCD so much, but it did! I wanted her to zip the pocket back up! It was bugging me so much to see the zipper unzipped right on the front of her coat. So I said "You should zip up your jacket!". And thus the fun began, lol.

The jokster guy on my floor immediately picked up on this OCD tendency of mine and when my friend zipped her jacket back up, he immediately zipped it back halfway down. Halfway down! That's even worse than all the way down! We then continued with this little game.....the guy kept unzipping her coat pocket and I kept insisting that it be zipped back up! The guy wasn't doing this to be mean or anything, he was just playfully having fun with my seemingly "little" quirky OCD tendency. He didn't know how massively OCD has affected my life, and since this zipper problem wasn't causing me the kind of major distress that contamination or chemicles do I continued to play along instead of leaving the situation (like I tend to be with some of the more anxiety provoking situation that I encounter).

My friend Thon (a nick name of course) then kept insisting I turn around so that I didn't see the unzipped coat pocket and I kept turning back  to face it insisting that I could "feel it" even when I wan't looking at the zipper. Then my friend Mandy, one of my closest friends here at college, piped up insisting that I do exposure with the zipper and continue looking at it even though it was zipped down. Lol, Mandy and I have talked about OCD and exposure in the past since she is one of my closest friends. And then my friend Mike (who I am not quite so close to) was trying to figure out why the zipper was bothering me so much and he concluded I must have ADD. Lol, Mandy quickly corrected him saying "not ADD....OCD!" Lol, in the end we just ended up finding the situation hilarious and we were all laughing. :) A classic Monk moment for sure!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Meet Johanna! Johanna's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Johanna! She and many others who live with Tourette's Syndrome will be featured in our upcoming documentary! 

"Hey, I'm Johanna! I'm 18 years old and live in Lititz, PA.

I've had TS for as long as I remember, but it was very mild until age 16. My tics range from neck tics, to full body convulsions, to screaming obscenities, to screaming fun words like MOM BIT ME!. I have to many tics to nam

e!

The hardest part about my TS is the severity. My tics are constant and sometimes I struggle to do simple tasks such as feed myself. TS comes in a wide-range of symptoms. Unfortunately mine is at the very severe end.

One of my favorite things to do is bowl. Most people don't know that when us with TS, no matter how bad, the tics can calm when focused. Did you know, there's a surgeon with severe TS? Yep! That's right! When he's performing surgery he doesn't tic at all!

I think people should know that Tourette's isn't a funny swearing disorder. Only 6-10% of people with TS display Coprolalia (which is a comorbid disorder which is associated with Tourette's). Tourette's is a movement disorder and uncontrollable vocalizations i.e. grunting or humming. My wish is that people understand we can't help it. We can't control it, and I promise you it bothers us more than it bothers you. At least you can walk away from it, we can't."






Meet Molly! Molly's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Molly! She and many others who live with Tourette's Syndrome will be featured in our upcoming documentary. 

"My name is Molly Barton, I'm 18 and I live near Grand Rapids, MN.

I have had TS since I was 7. Some of my tics are tensing up my muscles in my arms, legs, and back, jerking my head, shaking my head, jerking my arms out to the side, a humming noise, a sniffing noise, blinking my eyes

, rolling my eyes. facial grimaces.

The hardest part about having TS is either having to deal with tics when they get really bad and out of control, or dealing with ignorant people. Dealing with the aftermath of being bullied and ostracized my whole life.

I guess I'd say my biggest strengths are my determination and compassion that have been brought on by my struggles with TS. I love to read, write, sing, play guitar, and bowl.

I think other people should know how hard it really is to live with TS. Some people think it's not that difficult, but in reality, it is. TS can bring some good things, but it can also bring alot of bad things, too. We struggle with things that most people don't have to worry about, and it can be heartbreaking to have to deal with. The pain never really goes away, no matter how good you can become at hiding it and making clever excuses. But with that comes alot of strength, determination, and compassion. Always give someone with TS a chance. They just might surprise you."






Meet Elizabeth! Elizabeth's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Elizabeth! She and many others who live with Tourette's Syndrome will be featured in our upcoming documentary. 

"My name is Elizabeth Klein; I am 19 years old, and go to college at the University of Maryland in Baltimore County.

I was diagnosed with Tourette’s syndrome in 2004 but have had tics since I was a little sprout. 


My tics like to cycle, and over the years I have had blinking, muscle clenching, shoulder shrugging, head bobbing, exhaling, breath holding, chirping, and other various tics.

The hardest part is when I’m in stressful classes and my tics spike – it’s loud, people sneak glances at me, and I get headaches from a few of my more troublesome tics.

Despite being in almost constant motion I am very good at crafting jewelry and figures out of paper, clay, wire, almost anything – most of my jewelry and holiday gifts are handmade. I’m also a very avid reader. I love to read and craft, and when I get really absorbed my tics tend to lessen in intensity.

One thing I would love for others to know about TS is that it is a part of me, like a large, very visible mole. I’ve had it since I was small and have learned to live with it. It bugs others more than it bugs me, and I’m usually not aware of it unless people bring it to my attention or I’ve had a particularly stressful day. Another thing others should know is that people with TS are all different – not one of us has exactly the same symptoms and tics and not all of us are affected the same way."






Meet Grant! Grant's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Grant! Grant and many others who live with Tourette's Syndrome will be featured in our upcoming documentary. 

"My name is Grant Russell Jarboe and I am 10 years old. I live in a small town near Indianapolis, Indiana. I’m in the 5th grade and I love math the most. I love playing soccer and I’m on a travel team. Mostly I play defense. 

I’m not sure how long I’ve had Tourette Syndrome but I do

n’t remember a time when I didn’t have it. My mom says that I have had it since I was very little but wasn’t officially diagnosed until 2009.

I have lots of tics that I do all of the time but sometimes I have some that come and go. The tics that I do all the time are a head nod, some noises I make with my throat, a hand shake, a jump, nose wiggle, running my finger under my nose, grabbing my privates, and smelling my blankies when they are around. Sometimes I have different vocal noises. There is an order that my tics go when they come out but it depends on the situation that I am in.

The hardest part of living with TS for me is when I’m running and have a tic, it makes me stop and do it. I could do it on the way but I worry about landing wrong and getting hurt so I have to stop to let my tic go."

I am good at my position in soccer. I work very hard to defend the goal when I’m playing. One of my strengths during soccer is when I tic and it distracts the opponents. I don’t let my tics bother me or slow me down. They are who I am.

I want to bring awareness to help people that are made fun of because of their TS. Even though I’ve only had it happen once it made me realize that sometimes it happens to other people more often and I want to make people understand what TS is and that they can’t help it."






Meet Brendon! Brendon's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Brendon! Brendon and many others will be featured in our upcoming Tourette's Documentary. 

"My name is Brendon. I'm 6yrs old and I am from Louisiana.

I was diagnosed with TS when I was 4. My tics include: head shaking, blinking, hand flapping, the need to stop while walking, and occasionally a few vocal tics.


The hardest part is my head shaking tic. When I can't stop shaking my head, it gives me a really bad headache.

I like to draw, play soccer, and do flips.

I want people to understand that I can't help my tics and that they bother me."



Meet Jeffrey! Jeffrey's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Jeffrey! Jeffery and many others will be featured in our upcoming Tourette's Documentary. 

"Hello my name is Jeffrey Spaargaren. I am 12 years old. I live with my mom, dad, sister and uncle in Romeoville, Illinois. I am in middle school. I have been informing kids since 3rd grade about Tourette Syndrome.

I was dianosed with Tourettes at the age of 6. I have many tics, such as head jerking, 

chest punching and completely freezing in the middle of a sentence, holding my breath, and squeezing my face muscles.

The hardest part about having Tourettes Syndrome is getting no sleep an then having to go to school, the less I sleep the more I act up in school. It makes it very hard to pay attention.

Since I was diagnosed with Tourettes Syndrome I personally think I have become braver and more edjucated. I like to play and wacth sports. Like basketball, baseball, hockey and more. I also like drawing. every time I draw I forget I ever had Tourettes.






Meet Phillip! Phillip's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Phillip! Phillip and many others will be featured in our upcoming Tourette's documentary! 

"Hi my name is Phillip Muddiman and am 11years old in 6th grade. 

I was diagnosed with TS when I was In 3rd grade. 

My tics are blinking, throat clearing, tapping and hand movements.

It is hard to look at something without blinking and controlling tics. I often lose my concentration

When I am sad, stressed, or angry I like to write. I like to skateboard and hang out with my friends. I also love Taekwondo, I am a green belt and working to get my black belt someday

I wish people knew that I can not control my tics, and I can not help doing them. I have to do my tics"


Meet Cassandra! Cassandra's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Cassandra! She and many others will be featured in our upcoming Tourette's documentary. 

"I'm Cassandra, I'm 18, and I live in New York. I run the Tourette's Toucan tumblr!

I've had symptoms of TS since I was 5, but wasn't formally diagnosed until I was 9. 


My most consistent tics are a head jerk, an arm jerk, a few scratching tics, and a vocal tic where I basically make a "P" sound. I've also had blinking tics, throat-clearing tics, and muscle-contraction tics.

The hardest thing about living with TS is definitely the pain that comes with it, and the fact that it prevents me from doing certain things like brushing my teeth as efficiently.

I'm a double major in Psychology and English at Stony Brook, which takes up most of my time. I love to read and write, and music is a huge part of my life.

The number one thing people need to know about TS is that it doesn't make us weird or bad. It's just another part of who we are, and we've all accepted that. :]"






Meet Shawnna! Shawnna's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Shawnna! She and many others will be featured in our upcoming Tourette's documentary!

"I'm Shawnna Rhey Moses & I'm From Boston MA.

I've had TS since I was around 5 years old & My Tics are Cracking every single bone In my body every second Its extremly Painful & Somedays I can't walk or move, My other Tics are , Blinking at lights for a long period of time & Noises with my throat & Deep bre

aths out of my mouth & Nose , Making a noise with my tongue &+ Making a noise after I drink something..

The hardest part about living with TS for Me Is, Accepting It may never go away or get any better & The Pain I go through from my Tics.. It makes everything I do feel like Its Impossible & It gives Me a lot of Anxiety , Stress & Sometimes Depression.

I love to be outside, I love Animals , I love doing anything with My Husband , I love Acting , Writing , Reading, Fashion, Art, Working with Kids & Music &+ I love Disney Movies..

I believe People should know how hard It Is & That Its different for everyone & Just what People really go through & How Painful It Is, I believe there should be more Knowledge In general & More Support!"






Meet Colton! Colton's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Colton! He will be featured in our upcoming Tourette's documentary. 

"My name is Colton Semonasky. I am 10 years old.
I live in Leesburg, Florida.

I have had Tourette Syndrome for 1 1/2 years.

Some of my tics include yelling out No, shaking my head fast, and full upper body (sometimes full body) tics where my arms and face go stiff.

I feel the hardest part of living with TS is how everyone stares at me and going to school and to focus because I yell out a lot.

One of my strengths is making friends. I like to hunt, fish, and ride four wheelers.

I think other people should know that we can not help it that we tic and it is hard when people stare at you. It is hard to live with Tourettes.






Meet Juliet! Juliet's Bio for the Documentary!


Meet Juliet! She and many others will be featured in our upcoming Tourette's documentary.

"I’m the lovely, beautiful and always bursting with fruit flavor, Juliet Michelle. And I live in Bethlehem, PA and... if you must know... I am 26

I started to have tics about 7 or 8 years old...so 19 years. Some of my tics are full body jerks, facial grimacing, blinking, scratching, head shaking, throat cl
earing, sniffling, hiccuping, ear popping, ear scratching, shoulder jerking, arm/hand shaking... Echoing things I say... Echoing things other people say such as shrieking, whistling, chirping, bleeking, and hissing. Teeth chattering, full body shuddering and spinning are just a few. IF my body can do it... i probably tic there


The hardest part for me is having full blown, full body tics that look like seizures... or being triggered by something stupid like a screaming kid... or a whistle...


I’m a very talented wedding cake decorator, when the tics don’t get in the way... um... I love to play piano and im good at that too...Ive had lessons since I was 5...and I love having pets like my big oscar fish! Oh, and I'm very smart. I've got my Masters degree in the history of religon... and plan on going straight for my PH.D.

People should know that Tourette's is not the pretty little disorder that National and most doctors explain away. It's so much more than just throat clearing and eye blinking... and I'm not saying that to say that people with those tics are less important. they are very important and their expiriences are valuable for all of us to learn from...But, I come from the point of view of a TS patient who is severe, and that is how I speak.
It’s not as simple as “oh, you’ll age out of it” or… “it remits when you get into adulthood”. This can be a severe, lifelong problem for many people… and we get forgotten about. BUT, BUT BUT BUT… that doesn’t mean we’re any less capable. Talented… or anything else. It just means that we’re STRONGER, Strive HARDER, work SMARTER, and have learned to be much more adaptable to difficult situations because we have to work against something bigger than us on the inside. We’re resourceful, diligent and often times frustrated because we know we can do more but our bodies wont let us… but even with that. We don’t give up."



Meet Zusil and Freida! Their Bios for the Documentary!

Meet Zusil! He and his sister Freida will be featured in our upcoming documentary!

My name is Zusil Eliezer, i'm 9 years old, and i'm from Penn Wynne, PA

"I've had Tourette's since I was 6. Some of my tics are quacking, calling people chicken, honking, evil laugh, loud scream, hand push, goose honk, nose pick,"beard" pic, and more. 


The hardest part is that people don't believe I can get new tics.

I like to play lego, pokeman, and play star wars.

I want other people to know that I can get new tics at any time."





Meet Freida! She and her brother Zusil will be featured in our upcoming documentary! 

My name is Freida Rochel Atkins, i'm six years old, and I live in Penn Wynne, PA. 

"I've had Tourette's for one and a half years. Some of my tics are whawha, chacha, dancing tic, stretching tics, brushing hair tic. I have a lot more but those are some of mine.

The hardest part is when I do my eye touching tic.

I tell it like it is. I like reading, playing with my little sister, playing with my doll house, and doing ballet.

I want people to know that it's my tourettes, I can't help it."



Meet Adam! Adam's Bio for the Documentary!

 Meet Adam! Adam and many others will be featured in our upcoming documentary! 

"My name is Adam Burton Farris, i'm 24, and i'm from Hendersonville North Carolina. 

I've had Tourette's siince age 6 and my tics are shaking my head, and grunting. I also have Tardive Disconisia. 

I believe my (dis)ABILITIES are really Abilities! So I make every day as good as I can.. So I try not to have bad days.

My Strengths are having (dis)DISABILITIES which I call Abilities! Because god put me on this earth for a reason, a very good reason!

Tourette's is not a disability, if you know someone with TS and think they are weird are rude try to get to know them. You never know they could become a very close friend! Or even your significant other one day!" 


Meet Jackie! Jackie's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Jackie! She will be featured in our upcoming documentary! 

"My name is Jackie and I am 20 years old and from VA. 

I have had TS since I was in eighth grade but I wasn't diagnosed until I was 19. Some of my tics include neck stretching, eye rolling, sticking out my tongue, saying stop, please, no, and yelping.


The hardest thing about Tourette's is not having control over myself and constantly worrying about drawing attention to myself.

I love working with kids and helping people. I also love making music and doing crafts.

I want people to know that it isn't necessarily a bad thing. It is just something that makes us different. Everyone has struggles, ours are just a little different than most."






Meet Holly! Holly's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Holly! Holly will be featured in our upcoming documentary. 

"Hey my name is Holly. I'm 16 and I live in Knoxville, Tennessee.

I have had tics since I was 12 but wasn't diagnosed until May of this year.


I have a wide variety of tics including squatting, jumping, barking, coprolalia, blurting out random words and head jerks and arm flailing too. There are just too many to count!

I would say the hardest part about having TS for me is that people judge before they even know me.

My favorite thing to do in the world is play saxophone. I've been in band for 6 years and I was drum major this year (the conductor of a marching band). I would die without it.

I think people should know that underneath people with Tourette's are still people and not a freak show. We do have feelings and I think people actually do forget that."






Meet Jayden! Jayden's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Jayden! He will be featured in our upcoming documentary! 

"Hi, my name is Jayden. I am 7 years old and I live in Kingman, AZ.

I just turned 6 when I started a shoulder shrugging tic that worried my mom. After some investigation and learning about TS, she realized I had other tics, such as throat clearing and eye blinking, previously shrugged off as quirks since about age 4. I wasn't officia

lly diagnosed until April of 2012.

Sometimes some of my tics can interfere with daily activities, which can be frustrating.

My parents and doctors think I'm really smart, even advanced. All I know is I love to read just about anything. I also enjoy drawing and building.

I think people should learn about TS so they know they shouldn't laugh at somebody when they're doing their tics, or call them names, like crazy."






Meet Brandon! Brandon's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Brandon! He will be featured in our upcoming documentary! 

My name is Brandon Zimmerman, i'm 14, and i'm from North English, Iowa. 

I've had TS since I was 5. I have had lots of different tics, but my tics right now are: eye rolling,shoulder shrugginh, neck stretching, tummy tics and a funky fingers. We like to name them!!


The hardest part for me is when kids or adults make fun of me because of all of my tics.

I like computers, video games, legos and drawing

I want other people to know that we can't stop it, even though you tell me to over and over again.

Also this photo is a picture of me with Miss Iowa, Mariah Cary who also has TS and her platform is TS too!!"






Meet Ariella! Ariella's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Ariella! She will be featured in our upcoming documentary.

"Hi! My name is Ariella Grodzinsky and I am 17 years old. I live in Baltimore Maryland.

I was diagnosed with tourettes when I was 8 years old. Some of my tics are neck cracking, hand shaking, knuckle cracking, occasionally cursing, kicking, squeaking, grimacing, and I have echoalia.


The hardest part of having TS for me has always been the staring. People like to stare at what they don't understand so there is always a lot of people watching me wherever I go.

I love computer programming. I know HTML, Visual Basic, C++, C#, XNA, Java, and RobotC. I got 2nd place in a state programming competition last year and went to Nationals.

TS is never on its own, there is always several comorbids that come with it. In addition to Tourettes, I also have OCD, SPD, Aspergers, ADD, Depression, and Anxiety."





Meet Cameron! Cameron's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Cameron! She will be featured in our upcoming documentary! She is a competitive dancer and loves to dance! 

"Cameron is 8 years old. We live in the Carolinas.

She started showing symptoms at the age of four.... it started with eye squinching. 


Her tics are constantly morphing from one thing to another. There is not one tic in particular that she has had the entire time.

They have been as small as eye rolling or nose twitching, all the way to popping her shoulders out of socket (which is what she is dealing with right now).

The other one that was the worst was she would just drop down into a squat and bounce up and down... this could get really dangerous, especially if we were crossing a busy road..."





Meet Megan! Megan's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Megan! Megan will be featured in our upcoming documentary! 

"My name is Megan. I live in NC. I'm eleven years old. 

I had Tourette's since second grade. 


I love to draw and play outside.

I would want to tell tell others that TS is nothing contagious and severe , it just makes me do funny things or noises.

Some of my tics are saying whoo, shaking my head, gagging and shrieking.

The hardest part of TS is living with it at home or school when people get annoyed."



Meet Sam! Sam's Bio for the Documentary!

Meet Sam! Sam will be featured in our upcoming documentary. 

"My name is Sam, I am 13 and I live in Watertown, New York. 


I have had TS since third grade.. I believe I was 7 or 8 years old when the tics began.


I have many tics right now. My most common tic is to crack my elbows and shoulders and also stretch my back..I gag when something is gross but the gag has to make a certain sound to be just right. I have had tics that I hardly notice and ones that are severe.

When I go in public I get body tics and begin to bend at the waist. I crack almost every bone and I also bite my tongue.

The physical 
and emotional pain, that is the hardest part about having TS.. tics cause physical pain and the people who don't understand cause the emotional pain.

I am a kind person and I love playing volleyball, art, music - playing guitar and I also love laughing.. I'm a great big sister and friend. 

I just wish people knew that I do struggle with TS even if I dont show it, but you have to live life and I do my best to live my life happy. Its not easy when others do not understand ts and judge me or assume things. I am a lot like those without TS, I have passions and dreams except sometimes I work a little harder to go after what I want... and sometimes no matter how hard I try someone gets in my way or ts does."