Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Little voice

I've lost my voice!

Luckily for you guys that's my speaking voice not my writers voice ;)

It's coming to the end of a very long few months. In just two weeks time I will be sitting on a beach on the tiny Croatian Island of Vis, swimming in the sea, soaking up the rays, eating good food - you get the idea! And obviously I cannot wait!!!

Towards the end of term I tend to get tired and then when I'm tired I get rundown. As I wrote about HERE I have been working 7 days a week for the last 15 weeks - with a week off in the middle - and it has certainly started to catch up with me. I feel tired all the time and when I'm constantly tired like this, there is a big risk of me getting ill. The problem is that I don't get a day to just chill out and relax. Also I work with kids, who - as I describe HERE - are little snot machines.

So on the weekend my throat started to hurt a little. No big deal. It simply felt a little tender when I swallowed. Then by Monday it started to go a little. It went all deep and husky - I spend the evening doing the worlds worse Johnny Cash impression - and then before bed it really started to break up when I spoke. But I got a fairly decent nights sleep and when I woke up my voice was ok again.

Well that was until I went to work. My first lesson of the day was cancelled when none of the four young boys showed up - this will happen a lot in the next couple of weeks because although we continue until 26th July, some of the children are already off on their holidays. I will no doubt write about this further at some point - and so against my better judgement I had a swim while I waited for my next lesson to begin.

Maybe that was the tipping point for my body. As soon as I started my next lesson, my voice upped and left. Maybe it decided to leave early for the summer too. Wherever it went, the more I spoke, the worse it became. The worse it became the more I forced it and obviously the more I forced it... well that only made it even worse. Luckily it was my shortest day of the week - I only teach for two hours on a Tuesday - but even by the end of my lessons- after just 1.5 hours of teaching - my voice was completely gone! And I was left communicating with my students in a combination of high pitched squeals and made up sign language (not the official BSL signs I am currently learning for my other blog Year31Project. Which you can read more about that HERE).

So here I am with full blown laryngitis, currently attempting not to talk before work this afternoon which obviously I'm having great difficulty in doing, while drinking copious amounts of hot water with honey and lemon. Last night alone, I must have drank around 2 litres of the stuff. I think it's working? Although obviously I'm not completely sure as I'm trying not to talk haha.

It's not the first time that I have lost my voice. As most children do, I spend a good percentage of my childhood pretending to have lost my voice and I have definitely used it in the past to frustrate and annoy people. However, the first time that I remember losing my voice properly was last June. I had been feeling a little rundown, both physically and emotionally, when I decided to hitchhike 200 miles from my house in Walthamstow, North London to my family home in North Wales. By the time I finally completely the 8 hour trek, I had completely lost my voice. It then stayed lost for the next few days. Which might have been ok, if I hadn't travelled home in order to speak at "me nan's" funeral. Luckily - with some help from the doctor - my voice was restored in time. It was definitely touch and go for a while there. But I'm glad that I had the opportunity to read what I had written for the funeral. (You can read more about this mad hitchhiking adventure HERE).

Luckily this time around the need for me to talk is not quite so great. Although it's still pretty imperative that I coax it back from it's short trip pretty soon. Firstly, I need to be able to talk in my job. It's not always easy to get children to listen to you at the best of times. More importantly (perhaps) I also have the small of matter of this excellent upcoming event 'Hitchcock's Home' which will be showing my short film 'letters', where - if my throat allows me - I will be doing a short talk each night this Thursday, Friday & Saturday!

Keep your fingers crossed, wish me luck and if you have any good ideas as to how I can protect/repair my voice, please send them my way!

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