A Mother’s Belief


  In the spring of 2016, I spoke at the national conference of the Tourette Association of America. After my presentation Kirsten described an experience her son Henry had had two days earlier. Henry has Tourette syndrome (TS) in addition to ‘High Functioning Autism’.  This young man is 13 years old and was invited to…

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Mighty Oak, Little Maple


  According to legend, two seeds (one from a maple tree and one from an oak) fell to the ground near one another. The forest in which they lived was dense, with fertile soil. While they started out on the same day, the oak grew faster than the little maple. The oak was becoming a…

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The Smile That Captured My Heart


  At church this morning, the children put on their annual program. It consisted of a children’s chorus and a small speaking part for each child. Vivienne, a recently adopted little Chinese girl, was sitting on the front row. She is four years old, does not speak much English, and is trying to adjust to…

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Small Black Spot

black dot on poster paper

  Some time ago I heard a story of a well-respected economist who gave a speech to a group of business people. Her topic was, “How to keep your business profitable during a recession”. At the beginning of her presentation she showed a large poster with a small black spot on it. She asked a…

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Scrap Of Paper

Father and son

  Recently I found a scrap of paper on which I had written, “It’s always darkest just before they turn on the lights.” I don’t know where it came from but I thought it might have a deep philosophical meaning to share with parents. As I considered its message many memories were awakened involving several…

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Because He Has Tourette Syndrome


  I have known several parents who made excuses for their children, mistakenly thinking they were helping them. Several years ago a principal at a local junior high told me about a boy in his school who was struggling with self-esteem issues, but really wanted to be the student who made the morning announcements over the PA system. After…

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Living Life With Dignity

boy and mother talking

  I met Andy when I moved to a new town for my first job after graduate school.  He struggled with many challenges. He had difficulty learning to speak, delays in his physical development and other learning problems. Doctors and other health professionals expected that Andy would likely do poorly in school and be limited…

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