Thursday, April 21, 2011

We All Have A Voice ~

I loved the movie," The King's Speech." It made cry, it made me laugh, and it me think.
First, watching Prince Albert (Bertie) go through all that work and heartache to find his voice, his confidence,and his way in the world made me thing of a of a boy I went to grade school with, M.

M stuttered terribly and struggled to get every single word he spoke out & heard by others. M was sweet and kind and loved to sing - We were in Chorus together grades 3 through 7. Like many who struggled from stuttering, M never stuttered when he sang, and he had a beautiful voice. Years later, when I was a college Deejay, M called me up on the request line and said how he envied what I was doing. "Speaking is not a gift I possess, Kelly. But if it was, I'd be a Deejay."

I remember telling him what a gifted writer he was and what wonderful singing voice he had. "Thanks Kel, but I would still love to be able to speak out loud." I never forgot what he said to me, and was immediately reminded of it years later when we ran into one another in the isle of our home town's CVS.

M: Hey Kelly, how are you? Long time, no see!
Me: M, I'm great, how are you??
Me: M, you're not stuttering anymore!
M: Nope, I went to Therapist and and turns out, I had some issues that happened to me as really young child that caused me to stutter.

I literally had tears in my eyes when I left CVS! Knowing that M had found his voice made me happy and gave me hope in the broadest and best sense of the word.

M and I reconnected on Facebook last year, and guess what? M became a Deejay at our college, years after he graduated! He's also the General Manager and has his own radio show!

And to this day, M still continues to give me hope.

"The King's Speech" also made me think of the DOC- And why it's so important.
Prince Albert was a patient after all, even if the methods used to help him with his stutter were not typical treatments of the day - And were prescribed to him by an Orator, not an MD.

And like Bertie & M, each of us goes through a tremendous amount of work and heartache to find our voice and our confidence, so we can navigate our way in the world and in our diabetes life.

There's one scene in the King's Speech that reminds me of the DOC and why I love it so much.
Bertie screams at his vocal coach& gets so mad that he says: I have a right to be heard - I HAVE A VOICE!

YEP, the "I HAVE A VOICE," line took my breath away & made me sob out loud at the same time.

That line pretty much sums up what the Diabetes On-line Community has given each and every one of us. All of us in the community have a voice, and each is distinct and unique. And whether we read blogs or write them, shout out loud and advocate from the rooftops or quietly share our thoughts and live our lives to the fullest, our patient voices are so incredibly important.

For the longest time, we never had our diabetes/patient voice, and if we did, it didn't count to those in the medical community.
We were talked "at" not "to" and rarely "with." We were considered secondary to our disease and our opinions on the subject didn't matter.

Here's the thing: Whether you shout or whisper, your voice counts. Your voice helps others and your voice helps you to help yourself.

I'm not going to judge you on how loud voice is or isn't. But I will encourage you to find your voice, and use it in a way that works for you.

We all have a voice and all of our words are important - And each one of us deserves to be heard & respected~


Cara said...

This is beautiful Kelly. :)

The DL said...

This could not have come at a better time for me. Sometimes, I think to myself, "how dare I feel bad for myself! I don't have cancer or AIDS etc." but you're right. We all have a voice and a right to be heard. Thank you.

Kerri. said...

Beautiful post, Kel.

Frog's Mom said...

I've never seen this movie before, but now I want to.
Thanks so much for sharing that story. Very beautiful and inspiring.

Penny said...

Beautiful Kel.

Hallie Addington said...

How much do I love this? A lot!!! This is something I keep finding myself going back to in my posts... ONE VOICE. Sometimes all it takes is one voice.

Katie from SF said...

You go girl. Nuf said.

Anonymous said...

I love this. Even though I know better, I sometimes find myself comparing myself unfavorably with folks who write letters, raise money, lobby their congressmen, or pester national organizations into recognizing the necessity of a course correction. But all of us contribute, even if our advocacy consists of an occasional tweet.

Denise aka Mom of Bean said...

So true!

Alissa Evelyn said...

i'm loving this post! i'm still trying to work out how my voice can be best heard - so thanks :)