Lessons I’m Learning From Having A Voice But Not Being Able To Speak

Before I go into this post, I want to first thank all the kind and wonderful people who have taken the time to comment on this GOD-given character-building period when I am not allowed to speak. Thank you from the bottom of my heart! Your love, prayers, and encouragement mean more to me than I can express.

Have you ever said these words, “GOD, I thank you for my voice?” I’ll have to say I never have.

I thank GOD often for the abilities to see, smell, hear, speak, walk, etc., but never once did I just say, “GOD, thank You for my voice.”

When I was a little girl, I remember my parents saying, “You never miss the well until the water runs dry.” Tis true. Never have I appreciated the ability to speak more than now—when practically speaking, I have no voice. And how I miss hearing the sound of my own voice. Not in a narcissistic sense but strictly because it’s an ever present reminder that I cannot verbally communicate with others.

Arriving at the restaurant that day and not being able to respond to even a simple “Hello” was very unsettling. The reality of being in public and not being able to speak took me way out of my comfort zone—even more than I had imagined. I think it would just about everyone. Sitting there and relying on my husband to convey what I wanted to eat was extremely awkward, to say the least. As I wrote on the board to tell him my selection—the waitress looking on and patiently waiting—I felt very uncomfortable. I’ve not been that profoundly self-conscious in a very long time. And I found myself becoming quite frustrated when my poor husband didn’t understand what I wanted. Alas, my written words and gestures were not clearly getting my thoughts across. I could never have imagined just how hard it is to convey what you want to say in only a few words.

In that moment, I got a glimpse into the life of those who live with a disability their entire lives. As difficult as this situation is for me, I know that it’s only a temporary setback. It truly pales in comparison to the limitations, frustrations, irritations, restlessness, awkwardness and the like that many others must go through each and every day. Sitting there in that cozy restaurant—a little frustrated, quite self-absorbed, and very enlightened—I gained a deeper sense of empathy and compassion for what others endure each and every day. And along with it, a deeper appreciation for the gift of speech. At once I was painfully reminded of the importance of giving thanks to GOD for all His daily and abundant blessings.

What have you not been thanking God for? Though it has become cliche, we must remember to “Count our blessings each and every day.”

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