Ever since I was a kid when I got excited I would wave my hands around. This action was commonly paired with visual images that would follow some sort of story in my head. As a young child this would happen without me noticing most of the time as a reaction to being excited and as I've gotten older I've learned not do do that in a public setting. Recently, I found out this is known as Complex Motor Stereotypy (CMS) and Intense Imagery Movement (IIM). CMS is defined as rhythmic, repetitive, fixed, purposeful but purposeless movements that stop with distraction. IIM is engaging in acts of imagery while performing stereotyped movements kind of like day dreaming.
I am about to turn 21 and while I don't do this in front of people I will still do it at times. Sometimes I'll be playing a game or watching a video and it will start or I'll be kinda bored and start doing it. There isn't any set time that this happens for. It could be for 15 seconds, a minute or 30 minutes it depends on if I get distracted or just get tired of it. It feels like a rush and my heart rate increases. I don't know why I do it I just always have. I'm not stupid either. I'm finishing my junior year in mechanical engineering and have great friends/family. It was a bitter sweet moment finding out that what I did had a name. Since I've been doing this from childhood I don't think about it much and my family knows, but pretty much forgot about it. One night I was smoking some grass and had the idea to google "I move my hands around and imagine things". This led me to a site where dozens of people were all talking about how they also 'flap' there hands around and imagine things. Quite emotional everyone saying they thought they were the only ones and I was one of them. I continued to look into it reading scholarly articles about different studies regarding CMS and IIM. Not much is known about this disorder but there is some.
One study published by the American Journal of Neuroradiology concluded
"To investigate the neurobiology of CMS, we successfully performed an MR spectroscopy study of children at 7T to examine GABA and Glu in multiple brain regions. We showed significantly lower GABA in the ACC and striatum in patients with CMS compared with healthy controls. These findings were consistent with abnormal function of corticostriatal networks in children with primary CMS."
"Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is an inhibitory neurotransmitter present almost exclusively in the central nervous system (CNS), distributed across almost all brain regions, and expressed in interneurons modulating local circuits. The role of GABAergic dysfunction in mood disorders was first proposed 20 years ago. Preclinical studies have suggested that GABA levels may be decreased in animal models of depression, and clinical studies reported low plasma and CSF GABA levels in mood disorder patients. Also, antidepressants, mood stabilizers, electroconvulsive therapy, and GABA agonists have been shown to reverse the depression-like behavior in animal models and to be effective in unipolar and bipolar patients by increasing brain GABAergic activity."
So I got some anxiety and some weird shit with my brain. I'm still blessed and happy in my life. This is unrelated, but I am also related to Daniel Boone.