This is the 9th post chronicling my journey through healing vocal fold paralysis without surgery. I received the diagnosis in February, and if you’d like to read more about it, including symptoms, recommended medical procedures and what I have chosen to do so far, please check out the posts under View From the Voice Teacher. There is a great deal of information in those posts.
What is interesting, is that having decided to go the route of working with one of the finest singing voice specialists in the country, Jeanie Lovetri, and having the courage and fortitude to work through many very deep things with my psychologist-spiritual counselor, Dr. Roberta Sachs, I am regularly able to do my vocal exercises in that octave that the medical doctor said could come back with surgery only!
Now this is not quite the same thing as freely singing those pitches, and a far cry from singing the repertoire I used to sing. But seeing as there was nothing but a “hiss” in this range in February, this is an extraordinary development. Lovetri says there is not much medical literature on this type of paralysis, where the vocal folds are ok and it is the connection to the brain that has been lost. According to her, I may be able to sing a short art song by next year. She is working with several other women with the same symptoms.
Sometimes I do get very discouraged. But the condition has forced me to develop creative areas that I know, deep in my heart, are more authentic expressions of my deepest Self. That deepest Self was buried under a mountain of expectations, cultural conditioning, religious dogma and other assorted nastiness.
Another thing that has been very rewarding is that my teaching of singing has not suffered in the least. That is a relief, because that is a passion and my bread and butter.
Thank you, all those in the singing, teaching and music community, who have lifted me up with your thoughts and followed these posts!