My Life with Essential Tremor
Diann Shaddox is a Native American Indian and a member of the Wyandotte Nation of Oklahoma. She’s an author, book-lover, and she has Essential Tremor.
Diann was born on December 18th in a small southern town of Nashville, Arkansas, the youngest and only daughter of William and Mary Ann Shaddox. But, fate had stepped in and William, a crop-duster, at the age of 25, died in a plane crash on November 20th, the month before she was born, therefore, Diann was never able to meet her father. Three years later, Mary Ann, her mother, died leaving Diann to live with her grandparents. At the age of 10, Diann’s Granddad died of a stroke, leaving her Mamow alone to see to her.
When Diann was in her early twenties life changed for her, her hands began to shake when she would do tedious work. No one, not even doctors, could figure out what was happening to her and they, the doctors, believed she was nervous, and just needed to calm down.
One day, standing at the post office window in Louisville, Kentucky changed her world. A simple form containing her name and address, she wasn’t able to fill out. That one day she had to find her answers. A neurologist finally made the discovery that Diann had Essential Tremors.
Not letting anything deter her, she continued life with the determination she had learned from her grandmother. Diann was unrelenting to
do tedious work like counted cross-stitch on linen, and playing the piano even with trembling hands. It was as if her mind would relax letting her hands work without thinking. She learned how to hide her hands out in public, how to grip her drinking glass with both hands, and how to use her body for cover as much as possible.
Things seemed to be working for years, but on her birthday, December 18th, 2010 her hands were shaking uncontrollably. 2010 had
been a year when many people began to question and stared at her wondering why she was nervous or thinking maybe, she was just weird. Being out in public was difficult, the stares were tough, and once more, the simple feat of filling out forms was devastating to her. Even being in a doctor's office was difficult as they questioned why she was so nervous, giving her stares.
That night of December 18th Diann sat in her office at home, anger grew watching her hands quiver, and for once in her life feeling sorry for herself. The question of why, a question without an answer played in her mind. Being a writer the words began to flow and Quaid Witherspoon, a famous artist, was born. A man who had everything or so he thought, but now his hands had deserted him and his life of painting had ceased, becoming a bitter man. The story of Quaid Witherspoon, the novel 'A Faded Cottage', became an incredible love story, one about strength of mind to fight fate and never accept what life throws at you.
Even though the stares will forever be, she won’t give up. Now, Diann is determined the word will spread about ET and she is going to help make it happen.
May the power of many voices bring peace to us all.