Finding Your Voice

Singing Lessons, Workshops and Therapy.

 

Having no voice while running a business called Finding Your Voice is a somewhat uncomfortable irony.

 

I blame the “doing-ness” of life when “being-ness” is required.

There have been few full days between submitting my PhD at the beginning of April and now (September) that I have not been sick with either a cold or more intense flu symptoms.

Not the same cold/flu, however. One cold, after nearly clearing up, would suddenly find itself replaced by a new one. I saw doctors. I harassed doctors. I begged them. They shook their collective heads and said: “Some years it happens like that. You get a cold, as a result you get run down. When you are run down you are more susceptible to colds.” They did not seem to understand that my voice is not only my livelihood (all of my work involves singing and or speaking), but that I also needed to model good vocal care to my students by not singing or speaking while my voice was unhappy. And they did not produce the required silver bullet.

One did tell me I needed three months of good weather. He did not, however, tell me how I could secure that prescription.

Lured by the desire to no more let down my singing students and music therapy clients – and the need for income – I did go to work on an unhappy voice.  And I lost it. I spent one day at work, using my voice gently, feeling no strain, and had no gradual weakening of my voice. I arrived home, and my voice suddenly and instantly disappeared.

I nursed my voice back to health and though I did not “lose” it again, effectively I have had little or no singing voice during that time.

I blame my over-enthusiasm for creating new projects this year. I simultaneously wanted to start new courses and programs, maintain existing work, rework the creative aspects of my PhD for future performance in new environments, apply for grants, seek part-time work in academia, and develop a publishing record for future academic endeavours. I began songwriting again, and planned a songwriting course to teach. I got caught in being a human doing rather than a human being. And being is what I needed after completing a PhD.

Despite all this, some great things have happened. The first Vocal Nosh was a huge success. https://www.facebook.com/vocalnoshwa

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Fifty people poured ourselves into Earthwise in Subiaco. We sang our hearts out, and ate delicious soup, and the room was filled with joy and excitement. If there are voice spirits, they flowed into my throat and gave me back my voice for the night, allowing me to lead the singing and teach the songs with the love and energy they deserved. This was despite the fact that I sounded like a wheezing puppy when I tried to sing earlier that day. I have created several new pages for my website, performed at the Story Circuit in Glen Forrest (a musical storytelling), and have lined up some gigs for my new duo in November. I have secured some casual tutoring at Curtin University, and am cooking up a few other musical projects.

I feel myself emerging slowly from sickness into health, and this time I feel less rundown. Things are happening! Only I will have to be more patient and accept they may not happen quite as quickly as I hoped. I thank you for your indulgent patience too. It may be slow, but it is all in motion.

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Raelene lives in Perth, Australia. She tours & is available for festivals, workshops, & country & interstate events.
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