Lately I have been quite contemplative. Thinking, pondering, and reflecting instead of talking, debating, and expressing. I wish I could say it is by choice because of some newfound conviction or personal experiment, but my season of silence is caused by none other than laryngitis.
During the last few days I have discovered that speech is a tool. To greet people. To answer the phone. To get someone’s attention. To ask for help. To offer help. To acknowledge another’s comment. To meet a new person.
All weekend I have tried to avoid people altogether for the following reasons:
- My family feels the need to whisper because I am whispering. I find this weird.
- My husband thinks I am mad at him because I am not the chatterbox he is used to.
- I don’t want to be in the awkward situation of having someone ask me something and me not being able to answer.
- I feel rude at the store or at the bank because I can’t even offer up a “How are you?” without gasping for air and launching into a coughing attack.
This time of silence has made me appreciate my voice. I am tired of being unheard.
I wonder if that is what victims of human trafficking and exploitation feel on a daily basis. Like no one cares. Like no one hears their cries for help. Like they are invisible. Repulsive. Not wanted. Forgotten. Like what they have to say does not matter. Like they have no voice.
For those of you living in Canada, today is election day. It is a day to use your voice. My husband and I emailed our local candidate and made sure he supports Canada’s anti-trafficking efforts. Do not waste your voice. Empower your local representatives so that they can speak up for victims of human trafficking and sexual exploitation.
And don’t be fooled: I may have laryngitis but I am far from being silent!