Sunday, 10 July 2011

I have a voice

My voice has been failing for the past few years. Notes have been missing, making others has been extremely difficult. I put it down first to the menopause. Then I thought - once I knew I had cancer and that my thyroid was suspect as well as my lung - it was definitely the thyroid. A couple of years ago I had an investigation into my voice. The ENT specialist gave it the all clear, the voice therapists suggested excercises - but they didn't work.

I'd resolved that the strong and loud tones I was once able to produce were long gone. If I wanted to make beautiful music again I'd have to play the violin. It wasn't nice to think I couldn't do again one of the things I really love doing, but I'd accepted it.

So in the week just gone, when I suddenly had the urge to sing while driving back from the shopping centre I expected the usual to happen. Some notes would be impossible to form, others would lack control, some would be suspect in pitch and general I'd feel frustrated by my inabilities. Not so this time. I sang loudly through two songs and I still had plenty of notes left. I hardly dared to hope that my voice was returning, but there was that little window of hope that just maybe ....

Yesterday I met another singer and compared notes. She'd had something similar happen after a very bad chest cold. She'd gone through the same routine as me but the speech therapist had given her a lot of different exercises and they'd worked. Her voice had in time returned.

So today when I went to church I was wondering what would happen. I tried not to hope too much. The discipline of singing hymns is a very good one to try out a voice. My driving experience was not a fluke. My voice was all there. Four hymns and I could still have sung more. OK there were one or two little creaks - or should I say croaks - but most important of all, there were no big gaps in my range. It's still early days and I know I need to practise because it's been so long since I used my voice properly. But at the moment it's looking good.

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