This is the first time I’ve ever written something online, but I’ve wanted to for a long time. To raise more awareness about living with Tourettes, and all the things that come along with that (in my case that would mainly be anxiety and ADHD, but also depression and OCD).
I want for people to understand what Tourette is from a, what I call, a Touretter’s perspective, not just the medical perspective. As a nurse in training I know all about the medical perspective: Tourettes is a neurological (or, debated, called a neuropsychiatric) condition that is caused by neurotransmitters firing out too many signals – causing Tics.
You can get treated for it with cognitive behaviour therapy, or medication (mostly anti-psychotics).
My perspective? Of course, Tourette has it’s downsides, absolutely. There’s nothing fun about being in a busy airport and being compelled to yell “BOMB!”, or having twitching limbs that are going in all directions except for the direction you want to go to. The physical pain that are caused by Tics… sounds quite dreadful doesn’t it?
But, as you may have noticed, I write Tourettes and Tics with capital T’s. Why? That’s something I learned from the Deaf community and kind of took it as a metaphore for Tourettes. I’ll explain: you can be deaf / have tourettes (medical perspective: it’s something that needs to be fixed, something’s off with you), or you can be Deaf / have Tourettes – that is a cultural perspective. I don’t mean to say that Touretters are a subculture, but when you put a lot of Touretters together you do kind of get a ‘family-feel’: everyone knows the daily struggles, not being understood. Nothing is weird when you’re around fellow Touretters.
I, for one, am glad I have Tourettes. I wouldn’t be able to do the things I do if I hadn’t, wouldn’t know the amazing people that I know (special shout out to Renée, whieeeeej my friend) and I would not be as understanding of people who are considered ‘different’ – that may be people with mental issues, physical issues that are seen as ‘abnormal’. I want you all to feel proud. We’re different, and it makes us who we are.
That concludes my first ever online post. My personal introduction and my introduction on my hearing loss will follow soon!