On May 12th of 2012, I am celebrating the anniversary of a milestone in my life, namely just completing my third year with Foreign Accent Syndrome. It was such a dramatic change in my life that I am thankful I have some audio/video captured to show a bit of the journey for the sake of medical documentation as well as public information.
For those who have not heard my “old” voice (a.k.a. “normal voice”, “real” or “original” voice) here are a couple of pieces wherein I am being interviewed, and another where I am the interviewer as well as much more normal speech patterns.
February 3, 2007 –Before foreign accent: This is a video of me being interviewed after giving a seminar on using new media tool of Flickr and tagging photographs for better communication across the world wide web.
May 24,2008 — Here I am both interviewing AND filming a piece about a local ministry that accurately reflects my normal speech BEFORE I got Foreign Accent Syndrome:
THEN IT HAPPENED — MAY 12, 2009 — FOREIGN ACCENT SYNDROME changes my speech and a big part of me is gone!
May 26, 2009 — 2 weeks – my first radio interview in which I actually tell about how I got it and with my brand new voice! http://ellen5e.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/05/wibcinterview090526.mov
June 15, 2009 — 1 month after onset of Foreign Accent Syndrome: here I had an impromptu meet-up with Fishers Fran who occasionally has “bouts of Foreign Accented Speech” when she goes through multiple sclerosis type symptoms. She coined the phrase “flipping” for those times when she goes through it. Most of the time she is normal speaking. She found me via the Indianapolis radio station where I was routinely interviewed.
The June 19,2009 (1 month) video greeting is glued to the top of my Ellen5e.com web site.
November 12, 2009 –6 months after onset:
May 13, 2010 — at the One Year Mark with Foreign Accent Syndrome:
November 13, 2010 — One and a half years with FAS:
November 20, 2011 — Two and a half years with FAS (I am behind the camera asking the questions):
This is a pretty good library of audio/video documentation for now. I shall have to record some newer material for my actual “FAS birthday”. So you’ll just have to check back later.
I know that part of it is getting more comfortable with unusual sound and speech patterns as well as my avoiding using those words that I know are my “bad” words. Those being the particularly heavy accented or hard to pronounce words that stop a listener from hearing what I am trying to say because they are so hung up on its sound that they are busy figuring out from what country I originate.
In the meantime, I would greatly appreciate your observations about what you think of this bizarre Foreign Accent Syndrome. How would you describe my speech? What language do you think dominates the accent? Do you notice a change over time?
Please allow me to thank you in advance for ANY observations you have. Because your unfiltered input helps me better gauge how the general population views those of us with such a rare condition that takes away a part of our identity by making us sound like someone else.
A great darkness swallowed up the daylight. Lightening pierced the sky as the nails pierced the Savior. The wrath of God fell upon that man. The holiness of God demanded death as the price for sin. All men have sinned… except THIS One.
Jesus paid it all! This spotless Lamb of God sacrificed Himself so that we who were under God’s wrath could now be receivers of God’s love!
The moment had come for which Jesus Christ came. Betrayed, separated from those He loved, wrongly accused, beaten, humiliated, and hung upon a cross for all to watch die.
Can you see Him? Do you know Him? Do you realize that He did this because He was the ONLY One who could?
“IT IS FINISHED,” Jesus declared just before His death.
The very earth shook. Pay attention!! The curtain in the temple separating man from God was torn in two — from top to bottom. The only sinless man to ever walk this earth took upon Himself the punishment for the sins of all time.
We who believe now have access to God through Jesus Christ Our Savior!
Oh what a cost. Oh, what a Savior! There never has been such a great demonstration of sacrifice and love which has given us our joyous life with God; both now and in our hope in the future.
I would really like to hear about your own personal thoughts on these things. Will you please consider responding via a comment?
Have a blessed time of remembrance <3 +
It’s with great passion that I seek to assemble news and reports on Foreign Accent Syndrome. Since I first acquired it in May 2009, I have been astounded at how little information there is on this medical condition. Because it is an extremely rare condition (with between 50-100 cases worldwide — ever); it is even harder to find information about FAS. It is even MORE difficult to find “quality” reporting on it. So when I find it, I want to share it! Perhaps those who come along behind me with a brand new occurrence of FAS, will have somewhere to obtain real, useful information amongst all the cynical, critical and downright nasty comments that some have put out.
A PERSONAL BLOG –Even though I had read this blog post some time ago, I believe that it is so nicely done that I thought I’d share it here. Notice how the author, Arthur Greenblatt, does such a nice job of incorporating the news of the day with an event in his own personal life: 1) the facts are clearly stated. 2) Although there is an outside article as an anchor to his post, he has cited the source, date, publication and author 3) The source he used presents a lot of foundational information on Foreign Accent Syndrome.
I will give the link to his personal blog post here >>> Arthur’s Days Blog post on FAS
AN EXCELLENT ARTICLE –The Article, Fairfax Woman Developed Russian Accent After Head Injury, By Brigid Schulte. Washington Post Staff Writer, Sunday, May 30, 2010 is excellent at presenting facts in an interesting personal approach without sensationalism. Here is why I believe it is A+ Article:
A) The History of Foreign Accent Syndrome
B) Individual Cases of Foreign Accent Syndrome
C) Some noticeable distinctive features of the pronunciations and differences with Foreign Accent Syndrome
D) Names, at least one sufferer and one researcher/doctor plus many other examples of cases where names are not given, but features are.
E) The PERSONAL experience of sufferer being further harmed by public pundits statements and the added poor public opinion that such generates.
All of these together, make me wish to extend a “heroin of journalism for the sake of the sufferer” award to Ms. Schulte. This is one example of effective, well done journalism that I wish to continue to broadcast!
Since 2009 I have been amassing numerous articles and tried to contact fellow FAS sufferers. There is now a group of us who are in contact from around the world who are there to support one another in the unique challenges that arise with speaking all the time in a foreign accented voice with which we were neither born nor able to change back.
Perhaps Mr. Schulte or some other journalist of such skill will take another look at the newer cases and any new research being done with this very rare condition that seems to be less rare now as more and more cases are emerging. The first step toward fighting ignorance is GOOD reporting. Plus, there is something that makes it all the more effective when reporting about Foreign Accent Syndrome is done to show the personal side of the story!
What do you think about this post? Your opinion matters! What you think and ask can help us all make new discoveries, so please feel free to add a comment or question below. Thanks.