Jesus answered and said to him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but you will know after this.” John 13:7
I am not one to get sick, but about three years ago that changed. I knew something was wrong. I felt irritable (more than normal), jittery, and hungry, but I was losing weight. I had a ton of energy, but it was pent up and it wasn’t the good kind. It wasn’t terrible, but it just wasn’t me.
I finally listened to my body and went to the doctor. After a bunch of tests she indicated that I had Graves Disease, which is very treatable. However, the ultrasound images proved conclusively that I had thyroid cancer, and had several small nodules that needed to be surgically removed.
I had the surgery, and it appeared to be successful. The doctor said with rest I would be able to use my voice again in a day or two. After a week I still had no voice. It hurt to whisper, and it was impossible to do my job as a co-owner of a publishing company. My voice is my business: I talk to clients all day long, I speak at conferences, and I lead workshops, but I couldn’t do any of this in my current condition.
I went back to the surgeon for my weekly check-up. He was visibly concerned that my voice wasn’t back yet. He started out by saying that this rarely happens, but that he thinks that they may have permanently damaged my vocal cords when they removed the nodules.
I was devastated. I racked my brain trying to figure out what I was going to do if I couldn’t use my voice. I tried to find things that relaxed me. Although I went to school for art and design, I had stayed out of that side of our publishing business. But the very next day I started designing on the computer again. I practiced, I took online classes, and worked on my skills. After a couple of weeks I was designing for clients again, and I was happier and more fulfilled than I had been in years.
After six weeks, I went to bed one night not being able to utter more than a harsh whisper and woke up with my full voice back. I truly believe that it was divine intervention from God. The doctor was even stunned and called it a miracle.
This was not an experience I would ever care to repeat, but I learned a lot about myself during this time. I thought business had to be just business, but by using my God-given talents and adding creativity into the mix I am a much happier person.
O Blessed St. Blaise, you received from God the power to protect men from throat diseases and other maladies. Take away the illness that afflicts me, keep my throat healthy and perfect, so that I can talk correctly and be able to proclaim and sing praises to God. Amen