Tuesday, July 19, 2011

RSI has recovered and need to buy some bulk ear defenders LOL!

OK, I'm back! and No I have been a good patient and not spoken too much... but I thought I'd be bursting to say stuff that I wanted to say for 2 weeks but really I wasn't.  I know that people go on retreats that do this... but I had mine with a cold laser.  (Benign Granuloma on my vocal cords).

I am a 50-50 extrovert introvert according to the psych tests they did at British Airwasys.  They loved that I was a 50-50 extro intro split.. and did a different test to see if it came out the same and it did.  Well I AM a Gemini what did they expect!

So as much as I LOVE to talk, I am quite happy being silent too.  But when I talk I do talk with passion and super fast... well you can get more words per minute! lol!

What I found shocking from not speaking, was how FANTASTIC this speak it app was.  OMG if you ever lose your voice, please download it... for a long term speech app, they need to have a conversation page skype style so you can press return rather than pressing speak it all the time but apart from that!  I don't think I would have survived without it.  It was the best few bucks I have EVER spent! The accents were life like too, not too bad, not robotic and pretty good actually....

Ok, well the few things I found shocking from not being able to talk for two weeks was:

  • How people perceived you, like people you encounter on a daily basis.
  • How willing your friends were to help or not help...
  • How people try and take advantage of you financially, I had one person try and short change me thinking because I couldn't speak... that she could do it and i can't complain!  Well! she wasn't prepared for my iphone app or my Ipad to come out and me tap out a SUITABLE response back to her!!!
  • How you get IGNORED!
  • How you get taken advantage of......
  • How you can't shout for help
  • How even with the app, you can't convey the nuances or your feelings as you do when you have a "voice"
  • How isolating it really is... thank goodness for this app... but even with that... WOW! it made me want to cry!
  • How rude people are to you... 
  • How people see your not speaking as an annoyance to them!
  • How they automatically think you're "ill"
  • The ILL treatment I got at hospital after the operation and I couldn't COMPLAIN!
  • Or when the surgeon came around after and asked if I had any questions!!!  (I'm like are you a total idiot!) he wasn't ready for my pre printed questions was he lol!
Oatie and I went out together, and it was almost a comic act, he can't walk and I couldn't talk... so he did the talking and I did the walking.  We had this comic moment where I asked for a price check... Oatie swiped my phone and wnated to play.... so I swiped it back and typed that I needed to thank the cashier(she was a nice one) and he said "OK I do it!" swiped my phone back and did his letters during the transaction.  I had just paid... he looked up and said "Thank you LADY!! Have a nice Day", turned back to me in his stroller and said "done it Mum, lets go!".  I wished I could have laughed out loud...

I even had one man, we live out in the country, and I pulled over on a road that has 5 people a day on it.  It's a dead end road.  This NICE person pulled up next to me... I just got a call and pulled turned off the main road to this dead end road to reply back and play the pre recorded message to say phone my husband....  This man asked if I was ok, so I gave him the thumbs up... he then asked if he could talk to me... and I shook my head no....  He said put my window down NOW! and talk to him or he'd call hte police as he thought I had been STRANGLED from not being able to talk!  Anyway there were like 100000000000000000 mosquitoes outside... and I was like arghghghg.  I was a bit annoyed by this stage as I didn't want the mosquitoes in my car, they love Biting me! and well I had just got the pre-recorded message to play down the phone to the person who had just rung me... so I had to delete that to find the other pre recorded message and then add to it to say that I was fine and can't talk from my throat operation.  By this stage he's shouting he's dialling 911!  So i opened my window a smidgen and held my phone outside and played the recording to him....  he was like OH! so you're ok? I'm nodding... no one has hurt you and I'm shaking my head... no... meanwhile 100 mosquito's came in the car!  I couldn't even scream when they bit me :((

I was thankful that he stopped to see if I was ok as in the UK they would just drive by... but I think it was the frustration of not being able to communicate... something that we all take for granted.

How often do you think how lucky we are to have speech?  Well I went home and squashed my Oatie, as he can speak but it's sometimes unclear and not many spontaneous words and he expresses basic feeling but not the nuances that my other kids do... like the detail.  I am thankful that Oatie has that... but my not speaking for 2 weeks has really opened my eyes to how my aunt must have felt who had some strokes and degenerative diseases and Oatie and his friends who are special like him.

Please please please, do not speak at all if you lose your voice... just don't do it... download "Speak it" from the app store if you are an apple user!  So many accents you can choose from!

I'm hoping my operation isn't a failure as my friend and I went to see Bridesmaids 3 days after I could talk again and I hadn't laughed so much in ages... she wanted to see it during my silence and I'm glad I didn't as I would have broken it for sure!

The Ear Defenders and Tylenol are for my friends who I've been madly tapping away at my keyboard on my speak it app for two weeks and now catching up properly....


  1. Well, first, my dear - welcome back and you know for absolutely sure that we appreciate your experience as "non-verbal". At this point Adam is locked in that place because we have yet to find any assistive technology that he can use. It certainly has helped you appreciate Oatie and his challenges. We have learned to read body language - quite good at it but, of course, we want so much more for Adam. And, CONGRATULATIONS are in order for winning the blogging campaign. Couldn't go to a more deserving family!!! Good Work!
    Love, Sharon

  2. Hey Mel, there's nothing like a real life journey into the world of disability (albeit a short one) to gain a real insight into what our kids experience on a daily basis. I am so happy that you are back to your old self...must feel great and a bit of lost time to make up for. Also, my congratulations on the ABR blogging award...it was a well deserved honor.

  3. Hi, I am a fellow ABRer. We are starting our 8th year! Congratulations for winning the blogging award! I need to get moving with mine :0) I really appreciated this post as I have a nonverbal son. It showed me how very important it is to at least get him to use his device more and to realize what struggles he will be up against as he gains more independence. Thanks!

  4. I had my mouth wired shut for 8 weeks with jaw surgery. It can be a blessing and a bane not being able to talk. You handled it really well. I love how when you went out, you did the walking and Oatie did the talking. That's great!!!

  5. Dear Sharon, Phil and Sue:

    Thank you, please don't beat me... but I am a bit speechless (I know I'm a brit and couldn't help the pun) at winning the blogging award. Like really speechless! To the point that I didn't even mention it in my blog as I was so taken back, and kept on opening and closing the email... like really?. There are so many other fabulous ABR blogs out there. Sue it's really nice to meet you, I would love to see your blog sometime if you didn't mind sharing your URL.

    Dear Lizbeth:
    I cannot imagine having my jaw wired shut for 8 weeks... I so agree about the blessing and the bane.
    The things I enjoyed was
    -"turning a blind eye",
    - learning to pick my battles... like will this really matter in 30 minutes or a day or not...
    -and letting things roll over my head and.....
    -watching arguments and no one being able to rope me into them... (at our skate camp this summer) typing out, sorry my ipads flat lol!
    - or not having to make pleasantries with people who are ongoingly rude to you...
    -and! Not really having to dicipline my gorgeous kidlets... I could tell the off to a certain extent but having to sit there and watch daddy having to to the "chats" was pure pleasure! shhh don't tell him I said that!

    The Bane: How non verbal people, long term get treated. OMG! It makes you sick! and I felt really ANGRY. Know when people say a crass comment and being verbal, you have the choice whether to SNAP a comment back or not... Here you can't and by the time you get your buttons pressed on your app... the moment has passed or they have walked off!
    Also, Like my doctors asked me to phone for the result... err how can you communicate with them if you can't speak!

    The Dentist emailed a reminder, but you can't email back, it said please PHONE! I almost had to drive down there and press play on my app! Couldn't correspond by post due to the national post strike!


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