Photo Credit: notanartist via Compfight cc I may have spoken too soon about enjoying my "much-needed" day off. I had gone to the gym earlier that day and assumed the soreness in my body was from that, but when I laid in bed and felt that familiar tickle in the back of my throat, I knew I was in trouble. By morning, it was official: I was sick.
Now, the last time I got sick was at the end of the Victoria Fringe, but this was due to sheer exhaustion and I was over it within two days. But this was different. This was probably the worst cold I'd ever had in my adult life. My body was sore, I got chills, my nose was runny, I was coughing up a storm and would intermittently lose my voice completely. Oh and Aunt Flo decided to pop by for a visit just for good measure. Because timing.
And because the Universe is a HI-larious, this all happened on back-to-back 3-show days.
How could this have happened? Where in the world could I have caught this cold? I haven't been around any sick people. Only hundreds and hundreds of tiny, adorable little children who love to high five and surprise you with hugs... Oh.
Note to self: buy hand sanitizer.
The thing about being an independent artist is that you don't get sick days. There is no understudy waiting in the wings. If we can't do the show, that's it. There is no performance and we don't get paid. So, you suck it up, dope yourself up with meds, and pray adrenaline pulls you through just one more show. It, after all, must go on.
I've been lucky. We do have microphones so I haven't had to throw out my voice in echo-y gyms and we've had some nice accommodations so I could rest up in the evening. But it's been an incredibly frustrating experience. I'm a perfectionist and I hate not being able to give my 100%. I reached my breaking point yesterday when I tried to sing during soundcheck and could barely squeak out the words - did I mention we also have to sing in the show? The sounds coming out of my mouth are alien and weird. My ears have been plugged up so I'm not hearing things properly either. It's infuriating to feel like your body isn't cooperating.
Today, I finally feel slightly better. It's not great, but it's better. And I've been finding ways to sing around my normal register so I can at least hit the notes without cracking.
We had a show this morning in a lovely bilingual school and it was probably my favorite performance of the run so far. Now we're all packed up and on our way to Red Deer. One performance there this afternoon and another tomorrow morning and we'll finally be on our way back to Vancouver for a few days of rest. Hopefully it will be enough time for me to shake this thing.
If anyone has any vocal tips, I'd be happy to hear all about them in the comment section.