What you have

September 25, 2021

Imagination, Day 26

So much has been given to me I have not time to ponder over that which has been denied.
― Helen Keller

Nine years ago, this past week, I came home from a stay in Emory hospital. I had a hole in my throat where my vocal cords had been.

I wanted to feel sorry for myself and to mourn over my loss,

But there were so many good things and good people in my life that I just couldn’t be sad for long. It was time to study the situation and learn to cope.

It was a time to ponder.

For about six months, I could not talk at all and I carried a pen and a notebook with me to help me communicate.

At the end of that six months, I was fortunate enough to be able to receive a voice prosthesis that allows me to speak in an almost normal fashion. You can perhaps imagine my joy. It didn’t matter at all to me that I would have to always wear a funny button on my throat. It didn’t bother me at all that I had to push the button in order to talk.

Sometimes well-meaning people will say something like, “I’m so sorry that you have to put up with this.”

“Don’t be sorry,” I reply. “Rejoice with me that I have been able to live nine wonderful years that I wouldn’t have had otherwise.”

“Rejoice with me in that the button has become a part of my identity. Rejoice with me that I am alive, strong, and still able to ‘play in the dirt.’”

That’s nine years that I would not have otherwise had. There have been some hard times and some sad times, but the wonderful thing is that I plan to go on for some time yet to come.

Yes, rejoice with me for the things we have and refuse with me to worry about the things that have been denied us.

—john schulz      

Power to the positive

Published by John P.Schulz

I lost my vocal cords a while back due to throat cancer. The laryngectomy sent me on a quest to find and learn to use my new, altered voice. I am able to talk now with a really small and neat new prosthesis. My writing reflects what I have learned in my search for a voice. My site johnschulzauthor.com publishes a daily motivational quote and a personal comment. I write an article a week for my blog, johntheplantman.com which deals with a lot of the things that I do in the garden. I am also the author of Requiem for a Redneck and the new Redemption for a Redneck--novels portraying the lives and doings of folks around the north Georgia hills. I have an English Education degree from the University of Georgia and very happily married to the lovely Dekie Hicks. You may enjoy my daily Quotes and Notes at http://johnschulzauthor.com/

4 thoughts on “What you have

  1. What a positive attitude you have regarding life and the unwanted, hard curveballs sometimes thrown in one’s direction. Obviously you’ve faced such challenges with maturity, class and a grateful heart just to be alive. Blessings, Sandi in Florida.

  2. John, we have not met, so today’s post was enlightening and touching. I have a dear friend in her 80’s who had the same procedure and with the same wonderful results. She is a very beautiful, very petite lady whose heart and inner strength always make her the tallest strongest person in the room. She, too, loves the earth and gains sustenance from it. The rest of us are the benefactors of your examples. A very sincere thank you, Ann F

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