Some of you know (though most of you don’t), that I haven’t been able to talk for several months. It’s one of the reasons I haven’t been too active here for a while. Interesting! Losing something so fundamental in life tends to effect almost every aspect of your daily walk and conversation. As a teacher my voice is the tool of my trade. But having it reduced to a whisper has made a significant impact not only on my occupation, but my devotions, my personal interactions, and just about everything else. To realize the simplicity and commonplace nature of the things that are our most cherished possessions, and to recognize how we have taken them for granted – is a truly humbling and truly valuable life experience.
I’ve been having trouble with my throat since last Christmas. And medical science has taken the better part of a year to finally identify the problem. Of course, by the time the proper diagnosis was made, the problem had grown into an unpleasant looking mass of stuff that had grown to the size of a marble just below my vocal chords. In that time, my ability to communicate was reduced to a raspy growl that would make Bruce Wayne proud. I have managed to continue to teach with a lavalier microphone, and a pocket stuffed with cough drops. However, even with those helpful crutches, I’ve had to contend with sudden attacks of uncontrollable hacking, and moments when I have had to slip out of the classroom altogether. At this point (October) my rich operatic voice is little more than a hoarse whisper. It’s even becoming difficult to breathe. I don’t think I would be able to teach for another week – as much as I love to teach. I suppose total incapacity is the only circumstance that could keep me out of the classroom or away from the students whose company I enjoy so much.
On Monday, the last of a long line of medical specialist, took one look at me and scheduled surgery for Friday to ‘excise the mass’ from the ‘laryngeal area’. (That’s doctor talk.) He is a very good surgeon and I have complete confidence in him – though I am concerned about any surgery at or around my voice box. I want to breathe again – and I want to talk again. But in this life there are no guarantees.
So, without seeming overly dramatic about my upcoming adventure tomorrow morning, (October 30), I would like to ask for an investment of your faith and prayers. If you believe in God, then he will honor your desires for good and bless you – and perhaps even me — for your efforts. If you don’t believe in God, then I’m sure he’ll appreciate your exertions all the more – and so will I.
May our Father in Heaven be with us all, my friends. And may the effectual power of miracles change more than one life this week. Perhaps one of them will be mine.