Tourette’s Syndrome Is Like The Moon


I haven’t written here in a while because this blog is called “How To Have Tourette’s”, and for the past few weeks, it’s felt like I haven’t really had Tourette’s.

Sure, I’ve been ticcing every day, but 90 percent of the time, the tics have been subtle. I’ve been coughing, clearing my throat, blinking. As everyone does all these things anyway, I haven’t brought a lot of attention to myself.

The other 10 percent of the time are when I am in particularly triggering situations: namely bustling, noisy environments. Yesterday, I made the mistake of walking through London’s West End. Unfortunately, I shouted “HEY” at a small, innocent tourist girl who crossed my path. Instead of doing what I should have done, which was stop and explain that I wasn’t incredibly rude person just an incredibly tourettic one – I blushed and walked away at the briskest pace possible.

Other times, I tic when I am incredibly stressed. I had a bit of an attack the other week. I was nervous the whole day at my new job, and in my lunch break I sort of exploded. All my tics, from my head to my toe, happened at once. It was a stressful experience.

For the most part, though, I haven’t been ticcing and I’ve been making the most of it. I can now go into the spaces that aren’t meant for people with Tourette’s. I can browse in quiet bookshops, go to the cinema, and sit down in fancy restaurants. If I wanted to, I could probably go to the library, the theatre or a meditation class. I’ve even got a new office job and, even though everyone is pretty quiet there, my Tourette’s has caused precisely zero problems.

This is all in the normal order of things, because Tourette’s is like the moon: it waxes and wanes. Right now, I am on a wane. One day – be it in a week or a month or a year – I’ll be on a wax again, and once again, it’ll be difficult. For now, though, I’m just grateful for some much-needed respite. Finally, after months of near-constant ticcing, I can sit and just be still.

4 thoughts on “Tourette’s Syndrome Is Like The Moon”

  1. Based on what I’ve read on your blog, your good days are similar to my current bad days. Blinking, coughing, teeth scraping and an occasional grunt. My co-workers haven’t caught on yet, although every day, something will stress me out and the coughing will start and someone in my office will say “uh oh, are you getting sick?” Every day! Did you let your new workplace know what to expect or are you just going to deal with the tics as they arise?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Jeff, thanks for reading and commenting 🙂 I haven’t had to explain anything yet, which is so good. I’m sure they just think I have an annoying cough. For some reason, I manage to let it all out before work, in my lunch breaks, and after work. I’m very grateful for this. I know it’s a lot harder for others with TS to sit in office environments.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I really like your analogy of how your illness waxes and wanes like the moon, I think that explains really well what it can be like. I have the same experience with OCD where sometimes it is worse and sometimes it is hardly noticeable and I’m not sure what makes the difference. Thanks for your blog and for sharing your thoughts and insights!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s