A friend told me that I have a powerful voice. This blew me away. No one has ever said anything remotely positive about my voice. ‘Til this day, I feel extremely uncomfortable when I have to leave a voicemail, usually opting out. Growing up, I was constantly reminded of how annoying and whining my voice was. Although it was something that I loved doing, I stopped talking and singing.
I stopped because I didn’t believe in the power of my own voice. I allowed the opinions of others to cause me to sink inside of myself, losing my authentic voice in the process. I didn’t realize that I had stopped talking and singing. Not on a conscious level anyway. I wasn’t talking about the things that matter. Not about how I feel. How I feel hurt. How I feel scared. How I feel broken. How there are days, weeks, even months that I go without shedding a tear. I don’t’ talk about how I am carrying the weight of my world on my back.
I really enjoyed singing, too. I was even in the choir in elementary school. I would sing whenever I had the chance: at a party, in the car, just where ever, when ever. I didn’t care that I didn’t have the best singing voice. I knew I was no Beyonce or Mariah, but I loved the way it made me feel. I felt alive and free when I would sing, knowing that I can’t hit a note, but not caring anyway. I would come home and record my voice because it felt good, but then I stopped.
I allowed the opinions of others to keep me from expressing myself authentically and freely. If my friend hadn’t said something positive about my voice, I wonder if my perspective about my voice would have ever changed. I’m glad that she did give me a new outlook on my voice because now I’m using it. I’m using it to be free, to be true, to sing, and to speak up. I’m using my voice to talk about the things that really matter. It’s time I set myself free. Free from the cage that I’ve made for myself. It’s time that I open up and sing out. Off tune and key, but still sing because it’s my song. My voice. And it matters.