When someone puts Annie on vocal rest.

on April 13, 2015 in SABBATH with 8 comments by

Here’s a weird thing.

I have bacterial laryngitis.

It happened like this: I thought I was just having bad allergies all of last week. I was blowing my nose all day and coughing all night. Like literally, Good Friday was my last full night of sleep. And it wasn’t like I was waking up and falling back asleep- starting the night before Easter, I was waking up and coughing/sneezing/face exploding for HOURS. Like, long enough that I watched the cartoon version of Robin Hood. Two nights in a row.

(Which, by the way, have you ever heard Mumford & Sons cover “Not in Nottingham”? Wowie zowie. I’ll just put the video right here and you can play it as you keep reading.)

Anyways. So I watched the whole cartoon movie. Twice.

Friday came along and I realized that my voice was almost totally gone. And I just keep feeling worse. Like I would go to a work meeting, come home and crawl into bed for an hour, then go to the next one. “These allergies ARE KILLING ME!” I would think.

I’m a dummy.

So on Saturday, I went to the doctor. Because I should have gone a week before.

The doctor was all, “you should have come in here a week before; what started simple is no longer simple. You dummy.”

No, she didn’t actually call me a dummy. But her eyes did.

And then she said bacterial laryngitis, and then she put a steroid shot in my butt, then she said “don’t talk for some days.”


Hi. I’m Annie. If I’m not sleeping, THERE IS A GOOD CHANCE I AM TALKING.

It’s been a weird few days, to be sure.

And here is what I’ve learned:

I’ve been told this before, but I have re-learned I’m a filler. If a quiet moment is happening, I will fill it with words. When no voice comes out of my voice, the spaces don’t get filled. And it was good.

I also have learned that when I don’t throw out my problem-solving ideas, someone else solves the problem.

I’ve learned that I’m not as important as I think I am.

It’s been humbling. Clearly.

And good. Clearly.

You know my word for 2015 has been SABBATH and I have done terrible at it. I mean, TERRIBLE. The Lord majorly got onto me about it yesterday when I was journaling and praying. Like, there’s nothing impressive about working a lot. There’s nothing “cool” about not making time for what we are commanded to make time for. The first third of this year I have missed time with God that would have made a difference in my life because I don’t make space. I’m no busier than you or him or her. We all have the same amount of hours in a day. I just waste more.

So without a voice, without the ability to get coffee with friends or call people back or talk to anyone who will listen, I sat quietly for two days.

Also. I’ve gone through a significant amount of cough drops and I had no idea a steroid shot in your butt could make you feel like a super hero (with no voice) the next morning.

These are the things I’ve learned from a forced Sabbath.

I hope I choose it from now on.

. . . . .


  1. cbed
    posted on Apr 13, 2015 at 7:01 AM  |  reply

    ooooodalolly! That sounds awful. And awesome. Steroids are amazing. Glad you’re getting some rest! Love you!

  2. Heather
    posted on Apr 13, 2015 at 8:02 AM  |  reply

    All the best Annie! God puts me on forced Sabbaths now and again – it’s a good life lesson even though they always seem to come at awful times. But then again, when is it a good time to be sick? I’m a speech-language pathologist so I have to agree with your doctor – rest that voice, even though it’s tough. You need your voice for your job and the last thing you want is to cause lasting damage 🙁 While you’re catching up on your rest and reading, have you ever read “Too Busy Not to Pray” by Bill Hybels?

  3. posted on Apr 13, 2015 at 8:49 AM  |  reply

    Oh, girl, I’m sorry you’ve been down for the count. It’s no fun when you’re forced to rest, instead of choose it. My favorite Beth Moore quote ever is “You can bend your knee or He can break your legs, but either way you’re going down.” I think that applies to so many aspects of our lives. God knows what we need and He tells us. When we don’t comply, it isn’t always fun. Feel better and shhhhhhhh!

  4. posted on Apr 13, 2015 at 12:03 PM  |  reply

    I love you. And am happy to make you soup if need be 🙂

  5. posted on Apr 13, 2015 at 12:05 PM  |  reply

    I loved that movie as a kid and your post makes me want to see it again! I’d never heard the cover of “Not in Nottingham” but it’s pretty good. Thanks for sharing and I hope you recover soon!

  6. Abby Breuklander
    posted on Apr 13, 2015 at 3:57 PM  |  reply

    Thanks for sharing, I needed this today! I hope you feel better soon!! Thoughts, prayers and hugs!!

  7. posted on Apr 14, 2015 at 8:39 AM  |  reply

    […] than you or him or her. We all have the same amount of hours in a day. I just waste more” ~Annie F. Downs This morning, my devotional verse was from Ecclesiastes […]

  8. jenn nahrstadt
    posted on Apr 17, 2015 at 7:33 PM  |  reply

    girl, i worked retail when i developed some strange, never diagnosed thing with my throat that went on for four months! i had to be on vocal rest for 10 days, and that didn’t cure it. it sure taught me a lot about myself though. one day, whatever it was just went away. no GP, ENT, or vocal cord specialist ever figured out what went on that winter.

    i feel your pain. if i lived local, i’d come over and we’d have a conversation via texting while sitting in the same room. and i’d bring some of that toffee crack i gave you last time we were eyeball to eyeball. in times like these, you need friends with sweets.

    hugs and get well wishes from here!

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