By Nick van Bloss
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Additional resources for Busy Body: My Life with Tourette's Syndrome
It was exhausting. I was confused. I was embarrassed. I was scared and I had no way of explaining to my startled family why I was behaving in such a way. ’ My class teacher at school became concerned and spoke to my parents about my ‘odd’ behaviour. My friends wondered what the hell I was doing, and those who were not my friends began to mock and imitate me. My little world was 18 Busy Body Book FINAL 24/2/06 1:16 pm Page 19 I HAVE to turning upside-down and I had no idea why. All I knew was that it wasn’t my fault.
For me a tic is most definitely bodily and verbal simultaneously. Just as my bodily tics ‘evolved’ over the years – shaking, to nodding, to blinking, to clenching, etc – my vocal tics underwent a similar evolution. In truth, the tics, now that they have 47 Busy Body Book FINAL 24/2/06 1:16 pm Page 48 Busy Body hopefully reached their full level of severity, just seem to be ‘chosen’ – picked out of a hat randomly by my brain according to its needs. Again, like the bodily tics, my repertoire of verbal tics contains a seemingly endless plethora of variations on a theme.
Then a weird touch variation developed. On being put to bed each night, I started having to touch/ press/push the headboard of my bed. ’ simultaneously and things start getting out of hand. It was a nasty trick for my Touretty brain to play on me. A really evil one. ’ and get a polite ‘Goodnight’ or ‘Goodnight, darling’ in reply from my parents, who were now downstairs reading, watching television, chatting or doing whatever it is that parents do. Then I’d touch the headboard again and say ‘Goodnight’, wait for the response and then do it again, and again, and again .
Busy Body: My Life with Tourette's Syndrome by Nick van Bloss