Wow. I cannot tell you what all of yor support has meant to me. I have a little problem with feeling like I have to make sure that everyone around me is OK. Otherwise, who knows what would happen... Well, all of your emails reminded me to take care of myself and I am so grateful for your advice, your well wishes and most of all your understanding.
So I went for a second opinion last Thursday to a doctor in NYC who had treated me for vocal problems back in the nineties. Boy was it ever a SECOND opinion. She feels that surgery is REALLY a last resort and that we should exhaust all other avenues before touching my cords. She told me that Rosanne Cash had lost her voice during her pregnancy. When they looked at her vocal cords they were shocked to find an enormous polyp weighing down her cord. They were planning on using surgery to cut out the polyp but Rosanne put off the surgery because she didn't want to deal with anethesia while she was breastfeeding her son. While they were waiting to do the surgery, Dr. Korovin went to France and heard a doctor speak about research that he was doing exploring the connection between hormonal changes and the voice box. When Dr. Korovin returned she told Rosanne that they would wait and see. Rosanne apparently breastfed her son for 14 months and after that her voice returned and the polyp was absolutely gone. No surgery and the polyp disappeared on its own!
This was huge news to me. I am not in the exact same situation, but I can learn from it. I am going to proceed with a medical rather than surgical course. I will be going on vocal rest while I take a 6 day dose of steroids. I guess I'll have to sacrifice my pitching career for the Red Sox, but I was having a hard time figuring out how to fit in Spring Training to my schedule anyway. I am going to be treating the acid reflux. I will also be donig a variety of other therapies- vocal, speech, physical. A few of you recommended Cranio-sacral therapy and it just so happens that my dearest friend from college is certified. Sadly she lives too far away to do the treatments herself, but she has been a great resource in persuing that idea as well.
So I will keep you posted. Right now my biggest concern is how to keep my week of silence from being traumatic for Amelia. I have called in reinforcements to entertain her. She may wish that I go on vocal rest ALL the time.
Speaking of Amelia, she has created a new word. It is a useful word for anyone in the performing arts and I want you all to know it so that you can use it whenever appropriate.
Throminate or Throwminate (Amelia's language is more oral than written):
When a player leaves the stage and enters the audience. You may have seen this at a Nields show when David Nields ran through the audience during Living it Up in the Garden. Amelia saw this at a ballet called the Honeybee and the Robber. The Robber was a bear and when eh was chased my the honeybees, he ran into the audience. Amelia did NOT approve.
There is also reverse throwmination. This is when an audience member joins the players on the stage. You may have seen this at a Nields Children's show. Amelia experiences this at our children's shows when she gets to come on stage and hold a washcloth puppet. Amelia DOES approve.
SO there it is. I will continue to keep you posted. Not being able to talk will make me want to communicate however else I can... That is a warning.
Thank you all again and again for all of your wonderful emails.