One way to tolerate my struggles with Language is speaking differently when I’m in certain environments. When I’m around my friends everything seems to move faster where saying everything in one breath is up to speed, but pausing every now again to catch my breath and make sure I’m fluent, is too slow. I try to ignore the speed of today’s language, but it is as if he’s screaming at me, rushing me every chance he gets by increasing the speed of those around me.
“Hey Marcus” Sieanna says while waving.
“Hey Sieanna.” I reply
We both lean in for a hug.
“What class. Were you coming from?” I would say.
“We had block. We just had a work period though so his class was cool.” She would reply.
“The whole. Class? He didn’t... teach or anything?” I would say in response.
I’ll try to keep at my own speed by switching lanes and letting everybody go past, but it is hard. My brain is a sweatshop. All of the work it has to put up with and the only reward is knowing that you’re living to do it all again the next day. When I’m in my speech class I speak at a more slower and relaxed pace and my speech tends to be more fluent. I may only stutter a few times, but for the most part I’m very smooth in my talking. My heart's not beating fast, and I’m comfortable. I think the reason that happens is because of my speech teacher. She expects for me to stutter and since she already knows it’s less pressure. Besides, if I didn’t then I wouldn’t need to go to speech class. I do change up not just the speed of my voice, but the way it sounds. Most of the time it’s natural. Especially when I’m with my friends, It sounds a little different from when I’m talking to my family or talking to adults.
“Marcus, go take out the trash, you see that it needs to be changed.” My mom would yell.
“Oh my gosh. I didn’t even know that the trash was like that. Besides, everyone else that’s in this house noticed that the trash was full, but yet I’m the one that gets yelled at. Y’all all got hands, y'all can do it too.”
I would mumble to myself as I’m taking out the trash. I was angry and to myself which caused me to be more fluent when I was mumbling.
I notice that I rarely stutter, if at all when I’m talking in a rhythm (singing/rapping). I have noticed that, that may be my key to taming my language problem. I tend to talk really fast and that is one of the problems I have because it pertains to my stuttering. If I can slow my breathing down and talk in a very subtle rhythm, then my language problem should decrease. Holding out certain vowels and sounds a little longer than normally, that should help. The only problem with all of that is remembering to do those techniques. it’s easy to say all of these things, but it’s another to do them. That is like another mini battle to go along with the war that going on with my vocal cords and Language. The way the technique will work by forcing more air out of my throat because that’s where the problem occurs, also inside of my stomach. Stretching everything out and it eases the tension that builds inside of me. When I sing or rap to a song I never stutter. I would sing a Drake song or rap Meek Millz and I don’t stutter. Even if I talk the words I still have the rhythm in my head which keeps me at a steady pace which prevents me from stuttering. It won’t necessarily prevent me from stuttering, but it will ease some pain. Mr. Kay also does this when he recites his poems. He has what I like to call a “poetry voice.” He gets a certain rhythm when he speaks. The words and sounds are held a little longer and it seems to help because he told me that he has never stuttered one time while performing a poem.
Language also attacks me physically. If we are going around the room and I have to read something aloud to the whole class or just speak in front of them, I tend to get nervous. My hands will get cold, my heart will beat fast and I yawn. It’s like my whole body is in a fight with language as well as my mind. It is as if my body is trying to distract itself from what the problem is by having all of these other things going on, but in the end my defense is broken and my struggle with language begins to set in and I begin to stutter yet again. One time in Mr.Block’s class he told the class to read aloud the quote that we used for our chart that we had to complete for hinduism. My table was the second table to read aloud and the closer it got to my turn the colder I got, the more I began to yawn and the faster my heart began to beat.