It’s been more than a week and I’m happy to say that the voice is coming back. Although not in tip-top shape, somehow, I know it’s getting better. I’ll be visiting my voice doctor later and hopefully he’d give me the go-signal to start singing again.
Of course, I’d start from square one and do vocalisations before getting back to my normal singing. Remember, the vocal chords are muscles and mine has been at rest for quite some time and just like any regular muscle, you’d have to warm them up. Baby steps.
The last few days were quite difficult for me. This was the first time this has happened! Yeah, I’ve lost my voice in the past but after a day or two, I’d be back belting out all those notes. This time was different. It was really bad… really bad.
Looking back, I did push myself too hard. I thought to myself that If I don’t think about getting tired too much, maybe I won’t get tired. I thought it was all in the mind. But no… the body, when tired, also gives in. I think it all started with ALL REQUESTS 3. Long hours of rehearsals plus the actual show did take a toll on me. I recall struggling during sound check on the actual day! People would say… “Pffft! Kaya mo yan! Ikaw pa?? Jed Madela ka eh!” (You can do it! You ARE Jed Madela!)
Let me side-sway a bit. That comment really stresses me out. Whenever I say, “Im not in tip-top shape”… or “My voice is really bad today…”, no one seems to believe me. Ah, guys, I’m human too, you know. I have bad days. But nope… I still get that… “Suuuus! Ikaw pa! Kaya mo yan!” (You can do it!). Then I just get pressured.
Anyway, going back… I just found out that ALL REQUESTS 3 ran for around 3 hours and a half! Geez! Yeah, I was having so much fun belting out all your requests that I forgot about the time… and I forgot that I was straining my vocal chords too hard. Then after that concert, I had to travel to Baguio (which took us around 5 hours) for the Lani Misalucha concert. There, I started feeling it already… I was very careful with my notes because I knew If I just let it go carelessly, I’d crack. Then a couple corporate shows followed… then I did ASAP… then taped KrisTV belting out Lani Misalucha hits… then off to the Aliw Awards. THERE! I already felt that my voice was giving up. Sound check was fine. But during the actual number, I felt my throat getting tight… and my voice disappearing! And I was singing side by side Philippine Icons, Dulce and Pilita Corrales! Geez! Triple the pressure!
That didn’t end there. I was required to stay because I was nominated for a couple awards and I was told to prepare another song just “in case”. Well, now I know what that “in case” was for… In case I won ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR! Well, I did! But by the time they announced my name, my voice was gone. I was supposed to sing “ Climb Every Mountain” but ended up singing a simplified version of “The Past”.
Geez! Of all the days to disappear?!! When I am announced ‘Entertainer of the Year’ and I can’t even entertain?! I was so frustrated!!
After that, we just had to cancel shows. As goodwill, all I could do was still attend the events but only do an appearance. That was to just stand onstage and wave. That was so frustrating and disappointing on my part. I couldn’t even absorb the feeling of being on stage and not doing a number. I felt useless.
But in this entire week, it made me stop and realise that you really don’t know what will happen next. At one moment, you’re on the go and in a snap, it just stops and changes to another course. I think God was telling me to slow down and not abuse his gift. He was telling me not to take seriously the “Hindi ka tao!” (You’re not human!”) comments that people were giving me.
I am human.
And I get tired.
So now, I just have to change my stand. Everything should be done in balance and in moderation. No more 3 hour and a half concerts (it’s just too tiring!)… song line ups should be planned… No more high pitched songs sung one after the other… a few is fine… and most of all, when feeling tired… REST!
And one more thing… learn to say “NO”.
Well, everything happens for a reason and somehow I now know why this happened to me. Again, I should accept the fact that I am not a machine. I am not Superman. I am human. And I get tired. I get worn out. And I also need rest.
In closing, I just want to thank everyone who sent their well-wishes and ‘get well soon’ greetings to me through text and through postings on social media. You just don’t know how much that really helped me cope with the frustration of not being able to sing. Your messages made me feel that I was indeed, important and that you guys cared for me. From the bottom of my heart… thank you.
I may not be fully well yet and I still need your prayers but I’m getting there. And I’m looking forward to that day I go back onstage and sing once more.