So I found myself in the studio this week. Don’t get too excited. I was only there to record a song for someone else. The good news is ….I was in the studio this week. It was a really cool space and the guys who work there were amazingly fun. I actually did the song in one take (yay me!) but we did two and ended up just keeping the first go. I was a little sad that it went so well. I could have stayed there all day but there was a husband and children to gather so that just wasn’t possible.
Let me just say this about that….”It’s better than Disneyland.” I can’t think of another place where I could be in total bliss for hours on end. I just feel so at home. The other bright spot in all of this is that I may have found a studio to work in. It has an amazing live piano and it is literally 30 minutes from my house…even with traffic. I suspected, from the moment I walked in that I was going to spend some time there in the future. It really came across my path and I’m certain it was for a good reason. Lets all just keep our fingers crossed and say lots of prayers. Later on I will figure out how to pay for it.
I would like to start this post saying that I had a firm diagnosis …..but I don’t. (see previous post) I have however, eliminated my worst fears. There is still something going on with my throat and I am awaiting the diagnosis (or not) of something else. What ever the cause, my throat still hurts a little when I sing. I am learning so much about myself that I can’t help but see this as a good thing. A negative diagnosis will be good because I don’t have some disease that will cause some major life style changes. A positive diagnosis is o.k. because there is a way to make changes and manage something that I have been living with for some time. Either way you cut it….I can and will be better.
I also learned something invaluable. Take care of your voice. All you singers out there hear this. Warm up, stay hydrated, exercise, eat right and basically learn to value what you have. You are no different from an athlete and you have to train and maintain a healthy body. Be grateful for you gift and be good to yourself. At any sign of struggle see someone about it. Getting a scope is a good thing and it isn’t all that bad either. I was so nervous about it I made my husband go with me. It is good to have a friend with you especially if you are worried about the outcome. If you value your voice, even if it is only for you in your shower, treat it like anything you value. Don’t abuse it, treat it with lots of TLC.
I will get off my soap box now ….just know that you are worth it!
My mind is racing this morning. I have to share that I am off to the doctor for a diagnosis to finally find out what is going on with my voice and throat. I was urged by a friend to go and have a look at my vocal chords as opposed to the worry and stress of self diagnosis. I have spent so much time over the last 6 weeks or so wondering “what am I if I can’t sing” It has been my identity for as long as I can remember. No matter what I was faced with that I found difficult or that I just plain couldn’t do, my fall back was always…”well I can still sing” I have read lots of stories (of the horror sort) about botched vocal surgeries. I know about Julie Andrews and her vocal woes and she is “JULIE freakin ANDREWS” she can afford to pay the best doctors in the world. Doctors are not perfect. I tried to stop myself from reading such things but I couldn’t stop myself. Knowledge is power right? (let’s not even talk about Michael Douglas and his throat cancer) Maybe knowledge is power, after all, having an actual diagnosis puts me back in the drivers seat right? Once I know what is going on I can then take control and formalize a plan of attack. My doctors and I will know just what to do to alleviate the symptoms and I will do what ever it takes…..even if it means giving up my beloved coffee. Nothing is worth more than my voice.
I am trying to avoid the thoughts of “I need to record now just in case I can’t sing later so I have something I can leave to my kids.” Crazy I know but fear can really do a number on your psyche. Today is the beginning of the end….of the fear that is. I will not live in the unknown. I will live in the known and take care of myself. I
I have a good friend who has been talking to me and supporting me through these many weeks of instability. He has been through this himself and knows the fear of which I speak. He is a musician and singer and knows the darkness I have been wallowing in and he has been so kind. I can’t wait to tell him that all is well and that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I want to publicly thank him ( at least thank him in front of the 4 or 5 people who might read this) Gary is a really great guy. Now…..for all you good Catholics out there…..please ask Saint Blaze to pray for me. Maybe all those blessings, you know the ones with the candles crossed over your throat, that my mom dragged me to as a child, will come in handy.
I’m feeling really nostalgic today. I found myself listening to Lawrence Welk and Percy Faith….songs like Calcutta, A Summer Place and Moon River. I just had to sing along when Petula Clark showed up singing Down Town and Dionne Warwick was singing Say a Little Prayer. This is the sound track of my childhood. As I wind down these last few weeks with my #4 still home I am reliving those days when I was still home with my mom and listening to all those songs while making beds or making my very own little loaf of bread in a cleaned out tuna can. There was no prouder feeling than having dad eat the bread that I made at dinner. I was a happy little home maker back then. I can still hear my mom singing along to Up Up and Away in My Beautiful Balloon.
As I grew older I think I forgot (for a little while) how great those songs were. I remember walking into the kitchen of my best friends mom and smelling her baking and her little kitchen radio spewing out some Burt Bacharach song. Her radio was always on the “Easy Listening” station and there was something comforting about that.
The hard part about those songs and nostalgia in general is that it is all tinged with little sadness but something draws me to it. My dad and my friend’s mom have been gone now for 5 years and my friend moved away about 13 years ago. I still see her from time to time and we talk on the phone all the time but I miss her all the same. We sing silly songs to each other when we have to part again after an all too brief visit. Yesterday’s song (after seeing her for a bit) was “I’ll see you in December” I know the right word is September but she is coming back in December (lucky us it fit right in) We both love the old sad songs. We laugh but somewhere inside we get how tender and sweet and sad songs like” Come Saturday Morning” are. The songs of my childhood continue to serve me well. Thanks for letting me share a little with you.