When I was in grade school, my mother noticed that I started making funny noises. Some tics and twitches appeared on my face, and I exhibited slightly abnormal body movements. After taking me to see the doctor, I was diagnosed with Tourette’s syndrome, ADHD and OCD. The doctor explained that this was incurable. This really bothered me and I felt uncomfortable. I didn’t want to live with an incurable disease the rest of my life.
The doctor recommended participating in physical activities as a way to cope with Tourette’s syndrome. Starting with martial arts and later participating in cross-country, track and field, football, basketball, baseball and soccer during my high school years, I learned to discipline my body and become more calm and centred. Unfortunately, this only lasted while playing sports. The physical sports never did get rid of the Tourette’s, nor did it ever heal it completely.
During my adolescent years, my Tourette’s got progressively worse. Occasional vocal noises escalated into obscenities, and tics and twitches happened every three seconds. This was extremely embarrassing for me, leading me into becoming more introverted. I withdrew from the external world, went inside my shell so to speak, and found that I didn’t want to be around a whole lot of people.
What started as a physical disorder became a stimulus for depression, insecurity, low self-esteem and rebelliousness. I wanted to express myself, however, expressing myself was an avenue for social embarrassment. I became increasingly uncomfortable with myself. This led to illegal drug usage, more depression and a worsening of the condition.
After four years of experiencing this, I finally decided to get more focussed and pull myself out of the grave I was digging myself into. Using my knowledge of physical activity, I became healthier through working out and found my own ways to discipline and improve myself. In the process I discovered the joy of helping others by becoming a personal trainer. However, I recognized that although my clients made great progress usually during the first three months, they would end up reverting back to their old ways of doing things and gain weight or eat more or gradually back off from exercising altogether. What I was teaching became a temporary fix. I desired to find something more permanent and lasting. The attitudes and the thinking of the individual also needed to change.
At the School of Metaphysics, I started studying mind principles and skills like self-respect, undivided attention, concentration, meditation and visualization. By practicing “mental push-ups and sit-ups” I started to build discipline, tolerance and self-control within my mind. I could speak full sentences without interruption from Tourette’s symptoms and I was more calm and relaxed within my body. Seven years of applying what I’ve learned at the School of Metaphysics has created nearly permanent healing in a syndrome that had 15 years of development.
Originally, I enrolled in School of Metaphysics classes to better my personal training business. In the process, I was bettering myself and my own mind to have a better life. My life has completely changed. I’m more accepting of myself and other people seem to be more accepting of me. Others find themselves quite surprised when I tell them I’ve been diagnosed with Tourette’s syndrome.
Through my journey, I discovered the real “me” in the centre of the diagnosis of Tourette’s syndrome. I’ve transformed from a child with an incurable disease, to a man that is no longer identified as “that guy with Tourette’s syndrome.” I found Walter Hrycaj. I found me.
As a graduate student at the School of Metaphysics, I now help others find themselves, whatever that means for them. People ask me, “How can studying metaphysics help me?” Maybe, just maybe you’ll find yourself, express who you are, and touch more lives than you could ever imagine.