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Link to Part 1 of this story:
All afternoon, I anticipated my evening performance with nervousness. It wasn’t something I usually felt, but I was “jittery.” I texted Hannah (my vocal coach) to let her know I’d be thinking of her when I sang that night.
She wrote back:
“I will be thinking of you having a wonderful performance. ENJOY!”
Then I told her I had the jitters and she wrote:
“Focus on your breath and on talking. You’re just telling a story.”
My performance that night went fine and I was relaxed. Hannah’s words helped me remember the best way for me to sing – to say my truth.
I love to tell stories. This one begins with my reluctance and struggle over releasing my music.
“Finding my voice”
I learned a great deal about singing from both of my former voice teachers, Peaches and Kimberly. “Finding my voice” is a title I’ve used before and it also applies to being able to speak my honest feelings.
At this time, my third voice teacher, Hannah fits perfectly into my life.
She has brought me back to being myself.
I came to her to help me with a few issues. But mostly, I knew it would be wonderful again to have someone I could share my joy of singing with. I missed that.
One thing that Hannah couldn’t emphasize enough was for me to sing the way I speak. I rounded all of my vowels because my former teacher, Kimberly insisted it was a “better sound” and told me I was over-pronouncing my words.
Hannah explained that was more of a “choral singing” approach. She was a country singer and her words to me were chew on those vowels!
Singing in a way similar to how I spoke was such a wonderful thing. It was hard to change my habits, but gradually I noticed the difference. Suddenly, I found my true voice to express my lyrics.
I speak about this in the audio excerpt below:
Last month, the studio where I recorded vocals reopened after being closed since late last year. All of my new recordings sounded so much better – I had a new voice!
Unfortunately, I grappled with the fact that all of my older songs didn’t reflect that change. I had worked for over a year compiling my best songs for an album. I desperately wanted to finish and release something to share with the world.
Even though I struggled with releasing them, I went ahead and uploaded two vocal albums to my distributor (CD Baby). Without any fanfare I put a link to buy music on the right side of my blog.
A month ago, my eyes began improving after I saw a new eye doctor. He said my eyelids were severely inflamed and that was something I’d never been told before. I was actually relieved to hear there was a problem and it wasn’t all in my mind!
He felt I had an allergy. A tear slid down my cheek as this new doctor was explaining it to me. I could barely process his words because my brain was shouting, “There was always hope!” I had given up on my eyes ever getting better and could hardly believe my good luck.
He gave me some sample eye drops to try; the drops were steroids and only safe to use temporarily. But within a day after using the drops, the debilitating pain in my eyelids was gone. I had a really amazing week, and then after I ran out of the sample eye drops the pain came back.
I had an allergy, but no clue as to what I was allergic to. I discovered that almost every remedy I had been doing made the pain worse, especially artificial tears and eyelid wipes.
I still had some eyelid pain, but life was a lot better for me after that. Having hope and improvement was incredible!
(I have a blog with more detail about my eye journey at:
“For so long, I despaired of healing”
It was a beautiful spring morning and I entered the guesthouse for an appointment with my hypnotherapist, Connie. She was eager to hear how I was doing.
I always looked forward to seeing Connie because being with her was an opportunity to really share the things going on inside of me.
All week long, I lived with my two adult sons who weren’t aware of what went on in my head. I didn’t expect much understanding from them and turned my energy into listening, encouraging and supporting them emotionally.
The common theme that day was one about communicating and speaking my truth.
I had shared with Connie how I kept my feelings inside. The week before a friend kept persistently inviting me to do something I didn’t want to do. I avoided telling her how I really felt by skirting the issue.
My friend didn’t really know me and that made me sad. After discussing this with Connie, my outlook changed. As difficult as it was for me, in the future I would share the truth so my friend could better understand me.
Keeping my feelings in was something I’ve done for most of my life. I was raised by a powerful mother and navigated my life trying to please both of my parents. In my marriage, I consistently kept everything “locked inside.” I was masterful at suppressing any statements or emotions that could rock the boat.
At my hypnotherapy session the week before, I had another breakthrough on this subject. Suppressed anger was building inside of me. I carried a lot of disappointment over things that had happened that past week. A friend hurt me and one of my kids upset me. The guilt over this was eating me up inside.
I discovered that I really “hated” anger, not those people I was upset with. Once again, it was an example of my black and white thinking. There wasn’t a good or bad person here; it was simply allowing my feelings and not feeling guilty that I was angry.
I told Connie that I was currently singing a vocal for my song “Rainbow Through My Tears.” The lyrics to that song fit perfectly into my life. I had dreamed of seeing a rainbow representing hope. I had composed my song three years ago when my eye problems began and I was going through my divorce. It was a prophecy – something I prayed would happen. I wanted to believe that healing was possible.
My song also had so many lyrics about what it meant to feel again!
I shared with Connie that I loved the new way I was singing. But I was frustrated because I had no attachment to the recent albums I had finally released after five years of hard work.
She said that perhaps under hypnosis I would find some insight.
I drifted off and felt soothed. With my eyes closed and feeling totally relaxed, I allowed my subconscious to speak. I said, “You know, I feel like this week I started seeing things in shades of gray – instead of black and white. I’ve accepted and moved on from the things I was angry about. I accept how people can be imperfect and hurt me. Not good or bad, but human.”
Then I added, “Wait! I see another side to black and white. I want to replace the gray. To me, gray is simply mixing those two. And gray is depressing to me. I see color instead! And that fits because having hope made life colorful again for me. Just like my song!”
As I thought about my song with its rainbow metaphor, I smiled broadly.
I wasn’t expecting to sell my music and profit from it. I just wanted to reach people who might appreciate what I had to share. Before my appointment, I sent a message to a woman who liked my music last year on Facebook and I offered to mail her a CD for free if she gave me her address.
My session was over and I was standing up to leave. I said to Connie, “You know, I’m going to continue to sing and share. It doesn’t matter whether my albums are my “better voice.” I have too many songs to redo and I want to enjoy my music. I’ll just keep doing what I love.”
Connie gave me a warm hug and I felt inspired as a walked to my car. I decided that I could think about my story in a different way. I could let go of any pressure to be my best. It was all a journey and it would only get better.
When I got in my car, I saw a message on my phone. It was from the woman I had written to earlier in the morning. She wrote:
Oh, I would love your CD! I’m going in for my second surgery anytime and I know it will give me blessings and strength. One day I’d love to meet you; you are such an inspiration.
She gave me her address and ended with:
Thank you so much, you are truly a gift from God, your words touch so many souls… God Bless!
© Judy Unger and http://www.myjourneysinsight.com 2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Judy Unger with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.