13 July 2017

On Voicelessness

One of the things I did start doing after reading Tools of Titans is writing a bit each morning, ranting really, in scrawling illegible handwriting I never intend to reread. Just a few minutes to get my concerns, frustrations, what-have-you out of my head. As my speed reading teacher in college said, "Write things down to unclutter your mind." A fitting task for me prior to meditation.

Packrat that I am, I have many old notebooks that still have many blank pages. Since I don't intend to keep these rantings, I chose a college notebook with a pink cover I hate (Italiano is written in block caps on the cover).

This morning, after a few scrawled lines, I flipped past a divider and discovered a few pages in my handwriting. At first I thought it was just notes from a phone call I'd made, but when I looked at the next couple pages, I realized they were conversations. My side of them anyway.

Back in October 2015, I had a bad respiratory infection which lead to insane laryngitis. For weeks, all I could manage was a word or two, maybe a short sentence, before my voice completely gave out. Even after I felt better otherwise, my voice was still gone.

It forced me to choose what was most important to say, if anything.

Thumbs up, thumbs down, nods, head shakes, hilarious and frustrating attempts at charades ensued.

In my commitment to resting my vocal chords, not much of anything was worth saying.

When necessary, writing was more easily understood if I took the care to write neatly (neatly for me anyway). Here's part of what I came across today:

I like that I put a star beside it. All other issues of dinner aside, this was most key, that we go by way of ponies & goats.

Over the next few months, my voice gradually improved though was still easily susceptible to strain. There were setbacks where I'd return to not speaking at all for a week to rest it. It was an even more quiet than usual fall/winter/start of spring for my part. I spent most of it observing without comment, without engaging.

I'm still kind of paranoid about it. If my throat feels dry, on the edge of strain, I err towards resting it, drinking water, sucking lozenges. I avoid yelling, clearing my throat, raising my voice if possible.

I used to sing more, which I miss. My throat is not the same though. It protests more readily, feels more likely to abandon me which is not an experience I want to repeat.

10 years ago on TTaT: Creative space

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