My son Colin has Tourette's Syndrome (TS). It's really complicated and we are constantly learning about TS and its many varied iterations. Tourette's can really come on strong in adolescence; this has been our journey since school started last year. Life has gotten challenging, frustrating and complex and we are in the thick of it now. Colin has not been in school since early November and much of his great participation in sports has waned (except for miraculously getting through soccer season successfully—his team became league champions!).
We had a birthday party here for him with four friends this past weekend. They played Minecraft on their iPads for an hour, then had cake and snacks (Minecraft is a centerpiece in Colin's life). Then they place the Cheese Touch game (Diary of a Wimpy Kid). Colin had a great time playing with his friends (one thing he deals with is strong anxiety over interacting with other kids). He was able to interact, share and take turns. So it was nice to see the Colin we have known having fun.
He then had a rough time later that evening and the following morning. This took the form of what appears to be Oppositional Defiance Disorder (which is a travelling companion of TS). So life’s rich pageant keeps churning along. It’s hard, but almost every day we learn something new and insightful. We have found a support group on Facebook for parents of TS kids (with some older TS kids on it as well). That is good to have in our quiver. Especially hearing from 20 year olds who've made it through this.
Sometimes, when you are in the middle of the forest, you are completely unaware of the perspective of the ridges above you. We're in the forest now, much of the time. This is hard. But we are so lucky to have Colin. Tourette's is no fun at the moment, but I have faith it is bringing all of us to a better place. It may even prove to be a gift.