I’m angry. There’s no other way around it. The tics are firing at me… up from my son’s bedroom into my office at a machine gun rate just as they have every ten seconds for the past 9 months and I’m just done. DONE.
He won’t take medication.
He won’t consider supplements.
He’s a vegetarian, also. My silver bullet was going to be some pill that would fix his nutrition deficit since we can’t talk Tourettes anymore and this pill would naturally STOP THE TICS oh my gosh, lucky lucky lucky for Mom! But oh, no, his vitamin report came back totally normal. No B-12 methylated unicorn shit in the name of no noises/good health for my six five giant! Oh no.
So here’s the deal – I surrender.
Just like every day, I surrender.
And most days, I’m okay. I really am.
Why Tics and I Are Mostly Sympatico
I exercise and I pray. I try to sleep well and substitute teach for kids far less advantaged than my own son. Combined with a few 12-step programs and reminding myself that I’m not, indeed, Queen of the Universe (and neither are you) I’m pretty happy. Even the writing is going okay! Turns out the workshop script didn’t work out for me. (I didn’t want to write for free with no credit, go figure). I recently landed a contract by another producer to write a parenting pilot for her. A writing conference wants me to teach this summer again. It’s all kind of cool when I remember to step back from the tics and remember what is working, not what isn’t.
Andrea, Where Are You Really on the Contentment Front
If I had to label it, I’d say I’m a solid B most of the time – not because of what I’ve accomplished, but because of what God has accomplished in me. Five years ago I was a wreck. These days, I rarely go there. (Once a month – usually with Tuskany – over too much coffee and not enough real food.) I know that the secret to happiness is not about my comfort, but about helping others. (Yes, I truly believe that. I tried it the other way – the striving and perfectionism… and if you’ve read my book, you know the result: abject failure and demoralization.)
Despite my wins, however, at this exact moment, I’m at a C-. Show canceled. Hack. Give it up.
Despite me being of service and roses and sunshine to everyone I have come in contact with at Trader Joes, Sprouts and Western Bagel… the neighbor kid and a friend whose kids needed a place to crash for a few hours… it still feels black and icky and ugly in my soul that just wants the gulps to cease.
No Sympathy/No Fixes
I don’t want anyone telling me how how to fix it. I don’t want any well meaning family members to tell me it doesn’t sound bad to them at all.
I just want to be honest and tell you that sometimes it’s just hard.
And after I hit “Post” I will go downstairs and make a few things for Thanksgiving dinner and be grateful that my son wasn’t at Borderline – a mere 20 minutes from my house.
He wasn’t in the coffin of the 21 year old girl whose memorial service my son and I attended yesterday.
He wasn’t bit by a tic in France like his best friend was two summers ago and who is now unable to attend high school or walk without a cane.
He cleans his own bathroom, makes his own bed, is getting straight A’s and has a million friends. He is blessed beyond measure.
But right now, despite all my sincere gratitude, it’s still hard.
You’re Not Alone
If your child is ticking, and you’ve done what you can, and you’re at a loss, please know that I’m right there with you. And it’s going to be okay. Most days for me it really is okay.
But today, right now, it’s not.
And maybe it’s not for you.
But I have a God who loves me.
And he loves you.
And despite the tics or the darkness, the shootings or the fires, God is good.
All time time.
And this, too, shall pass. Peace is through the doorway of serve and sharing, and we will come out the other side.
You are not alone.
Until next time,
May God grant you the serenity to accept the tics you cannot change, the courage to change the tics you can, and the wisdom to know the difference.