Amy Timcoe

Her tremor worsened as she grew older, affecting her physical well-being and her aspiration. “I had always wanted to be either a doctor or a nurse,” says Timcoe. “When I was in my junior and senior years of high school, I threw away that dream because I knew there was no way someone with shaky hands could be in the medical field.”

She decided to major in mathematics with the career intent of obtaining a desk job so no one would see her hands shake. “I was in the math program for my first year of college and hated it,” she says. “At this point, I knew that I had to follow my dream of being in the medical field and find out if there was any way I could stop my shaking.”

She was tested by a neurologist that confirmed diagnosis of ET and prescribed medication for treatment. “It was very bittersweet. I was happy that I found out what was wrong and would be able to take medication to control it; however, I was also upset that I did not do this sooner. I could have saved myself many years of embarrassment if I had seen a doctor when I was younger.”

By treating ET with medication, she lives without embarrassment and handles basic tasks like signing her name on the sign-in sheet at the doctor’s office. Timcoe says, “I can use my credit card to pay for things and sign the receipt instead of desperately trying to find an ATM so no one has to see my shaky hands try to make a signature.”

Timcoe was accepted into a nursing program. “I can follow my dream of becoming a nurse without the worry that my tremor will get in the way. I have even given injections with no problems!” she says. “Although I lived with the embarrassment of ET for so long, I am optimistic about what life will bring me in the future.”