Whenever my subglottic stenosis is worsening, every day tasks become increasingly difficult to complete. I find myself gasping for air, after simply getting dressed.
Notably, I begin to notice that I am short of breath while simply speaking. Of course, these are no easy adjustments for the very same woman who was accustomed at one point, many years ago, of being able to run several miles per day.
As a clinical health psychologist, my voice is my single most important tool. It’s necessary for teaching a college class, whether delivering a prepared lecture, or engaging in a structured discussion with my students.
Clinically, it’s imperative that my voice be reliable. My clients expect me to ask them a series of questions during their initial interviews. Obviously, they also count on hearing my responses to their multiple questions and comments.
So, I now find myself with symptoms that indicate that my subglottic stenosis is again worsening. I don’t yet know how I’ll be able to manage this most recent medical crisis in the midst of my new job responsibilities.
I’ll phone my ENT tomorrow morning, to schedule a diagnostic bronchoscopy as soon as possible. I knew that these challenges were possible when I decided to resume going back to work, even on a part-time basis. Although I shouldn’t be, I’m just surprised that they are manifesting so soon after going back to work.