Jacob and Elijah Shaddox are brothers. They live with their mom, Mary, who is the writer of this blog. Jacob is 19 and is now four inches taller than his mom! He also has ADHD and gorgeous red hair. He is a freshman at a technical college studying computer maintenance. Elijah is 15! He is in 9th grade and he is not in ROTC at his high school. He also had red hair, but it is lighter and not as thick as his brother's hair. He is hearing impaired(auditory neuropathy) and wears two cochlear implants. He also has tourette syndrome, ADHD, OCD and anxiety! Mary just started her 25th year as a teacher of the deaf. She is also in her last semester of graduate school to be a diagnostician! She will graduate in December of 2015!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Traveling with Tourettes

Our trip to Orange Beach for five days went very well. Elijah did a great job playing with other kids in the pool and had a great time riding the waves. My mom, Jacob, Elijah and I started for home around 9:30 yesterday morning. We stopped in Hattiesburg, Mississippi to eat lunch at the Cracker Barrel.

Elijah had had very few tics while on our trip, but boy was he having tics on the way home and in the restaurant. I think he was stressed some about leaving the beach and wanting to get home to see our kitties. He was snorting, clearing his throat, and banging the table. I just rubbed his back and told him it was OK. It doesn't bother me and I wanted him to know it was OK to have his tics.

We had a nice waitress who did a great job waiting on us. She happened to walk up when Elijah had a series of tics. He was quite loud. My mom mentioned that he had tourettes and those were his tics. I usually don't bother to say anything unless someone asks. Well the waitress says, "Well he is just a special boy and y'all are special for taking him out like this to eat." I held my tongue. I wanted to say...."well are we supposed to keep him locked up at home and never take him out." I didn't though. I don't think she meant anything by it. I think she just didn't know what to say and said that. Elijah also has his cochlear implants that he wears and those are hard to miss, so most people know he is "special" for some reason or another.

I have though of making up a business card and explaining his cochlear implants on one card and on a different card his tourtte syndrome. When people look, I can just have him hand them a card depending on why they are looking/staring at him....because of the cochlear implant processors or because of the tics.

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