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A writer with no voice

And how to combat those post cancer niggling fears


Today I feel dysfunctional. I am a writer with no voice. I am able-bodied but consumed by pain. The sky is grey, heavy with the promise of snow and the threat of disruption. And that disruption could have major consequences for me, as our daughter is flying in from the States for all of six days.

A miserable picture, heh? So what to do?

I can’t talk because I have, what I assume, is laryngitis. A vicious sore throat and general unwellness has crept down my throat and stolen my voice. Mr Google says whispering is bad; it put as much strain on vocal chords as shouting. Weird that. Am I the only one who hates the sound of whispering? It makes me strangely irate and whispering on the TV or radio propels me to turn the sound off.

This is now day two of zero voice. Fortunately I am alone for the weekend with my husband out at sea on what will be a very bitter and unpleasant two-day sail. The dog doesn’t seem to mind my silence. Tummy rubs and food appease him. I let the phone ring and listen to the answer phone kick in. And then I wonder, as I always do these days when I have aches and pains. What if this is permanent? What would happen if I need help and can’t call out, or how will I stay in touch with all my distant friends? Emails and what’s-app messages are not the same as a two-way conversation. Stop! I am catastrophizing again, as normal. A lost voice for two days is just that. Lost. It doesn’t mean it won’t be found. I just need to be patient and wait for it to reemerge like a hibernating hedgehog blinking in the weak spring sun.

So then I turn to the pain that grips my leg. It’s normal at 7pm but not at 7am. It must be the weather. Back to that freezing air sweeping in from Siberia, as the weather lady explained this morning. My leg doesn’t like damp, cold conditions or changeable weather. It clenches and aches and sometimes it screams with a voice it doesn’t even have. So I swallow a spoonful of Manuka honey along with two spoonfuls of cough medicine. I take an ibuprofen and snuggle back into bed. It’s dark and grey out there. I mope and feel sorry for myself but there is no one here to comfort me and I can’t even call anyone for commiserations. I am mute with no voice. So I will use my healing tools to cheer up my mind and distract from the pain. Tapping, meditations and perhaps, if I’m lucky, I may slip back into sleep.

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