What’s Wrong With My Voice…

///What’s Wrong With My Voice…

What’s Wrong With My Voice…


For the past 20 months I have been living in fear of losing my voice.  For most people not being able to talk with a clear voice is a minor inconvenience, but if you essentially make your living by talking, this is a life altering problem.

The summer before last I got a serious infection in my trachea and violently coughed for a solid month.  I was so sick.  I damaged my voice in the process and it hasn’t been the same since.  Some days my voice is fine for the shows, while other days I struggle to get through the day.

I have been trying my hardest to avoid loud places, phone calls and crowded restaurants.  I dread situations where I have to raise my voice or talk much outside of work.  I am terrified of getting sick because I know it will completely wipe out my voice for an extended amount of time.  I have spent so much time trying to protect my voice to make sure I could talk and do my job of telling you the weather everyday.  I have done everything the doctors have told me to do.

You may have noticed, it hasn’t been working.  Despite my best efforts, I keep losing my voice.

Last Monday I reached my breaking point.  I had been fighting my way through a cold and sinus infection for a week.  I thought my voice was going to make it through, but it was giving out fast.  Even with an entire weekend of vocal rest, I barely had a squeak coming out of my mouth after the morning shows.  Nothing was making it better.  I felt helpless and defeated.

My doctors in Asheville have been amazing and really helped me get back to work so many times, but they are not experts in voice problems.  They decided it was time to refer me to Wake Forest’s Center for Voice and Swallowing Disorders.  I met with those doctors and therapists last week.


They diagnosed me with a voice disorder called Muscle Tension Dysphonia.  They said the trauma of my initial sickness, the summer before last, caused my voice to not be able to deal with any sort of stress on the vocal chords.  Everything from allergies to colds to high talking days could set it off.


The good news is there is no permanent damage and they expect me to be able to learn how to fully cope and deal with the problem.  I am going to be meeting with their experts to work on bringing my voice back to 100%..  They are hopeful in the future that if I get a cold I should be able to not lose my voice at all or get it back in a relatively short amount of time.


In the short term I am on vocal rest.  The doctors want me to stay off the air, rest and stay healthy until I work with them enough to not make my problem worse.  They are hopeful that this will just be a week or two.  I hope so too—I miss you guys.  I love my job and it is so hard not to be able to do it everyday.

Thank you all for your support, understanding and patience with this.  I am super optimistic that I am finally getting to the bottom of my voice problems.  Hopefully this is beginning of the end of this “I can’t talk” chapter of my life.  I’m so over it!

By | 2017-08-15T14:04:33-04:00 February 18th, 2013|Fun, Personal Updates/ Top Monthly Posts|75 Comments


  1. […] few months following Chicago and her death I got really sick and lost my voice.  That ultimately led to me having sinus surgery. Even though I couldn’t run when I was sick, […]

  2. […] someone who has struggled with voice problems (in an entirety different realm than Logan,) I found it especially satisfying to be able to help […]

  3. Elizabeth Ann Mason March 22, 2013 at 11:00 pm - Reply

    Get Well Soon Julie. You Are In My Thoughts and Prayers.
    We Miss You Julie.


  5. Judy McCurry March 17, 2013 at 11:29 pm - Reply

    hoping you are doing well! We miss you!

  6. Libba Pressley March 12, 2013 at 8:27 pm - Reply

    Julie, My husband and I are really missing our Julie in the morning! Thanks for letting everyone know you’re getting better and will be back. Hang in there and continue to do what the docs say! Springtime and Julie are just around the corner.

  7. Will Collins March 11, 2013 at 10:39 pm - Reply

    Hey Julie. I think I have posted before about Ginger Root Tea. My recipe is take a “hands worth” of ginger and slice it thin. Put it in half gallon of water, cook at down to half. It’s a little spicy but will not hurt you. Drink often. should be able to drink in 24 to 48 hours


  9. Deborah Vanhook March 6, 2013 at 6:47 pm - Reply

    So sorry and hope you feel better soon

  10. Elizabeth Thomas March 6, 2013 at 6:31 pm - Reply

    I am praying for you and your voice. I just read your post. I knew you had problems a while back, and so happy that you have found someone who can help you and knows what your problem is.

  11. Bob Clark March 6, 2013 at 3:22 pm - Reply

    We miss you Julie we will be Praying for you to get well soon we miss see you on WLOS TV

  12. Donna Patterson March 6, 2013 at 3:00 pm - Reply

    Julie, My parents are in their late 60’s early 70’s and they asked me to get on my computer and find out what happened to you. They don’t have a computer and its so funny how much they have missed you. I promised them I would try to find out and I am going to call them right now and tell them what happened to their “favorite weather girl”! I hope your recovery goes well and your back to doing the weather again soon!!!!!!

  13. Tom Smith March 5, 2013 at 11:01 pm - Reply

    Just wanted you to know that my wife (Melba) and I have missed seeing you do the weather. However, with that said we are praying that you recover fully from your voice problem. Hope to see you back soon.
    Tom & Melba Smith

    • JulieWunder March 11, 2013 at 12:30 am - Reply

      Thank you Tom & Melba

  14. Janet Filkins March 5, 2013 at 2:01 pm - Reply

    We miss you Julie, and are praying for a quick recovery for you! God bless you!!!

  15. Mary Thirtyacre March 5, 2013 at 1:51 pm - Reply

    Julie, as you can see from all the letters you have received, we all miss you. Thank you so much for the wonderful update as we all have been, and will continue to be, worried about you. Love and prayers go your way for a full recovery.

  16. Gail Brookshire March 5, 2013 at 12:45 am - Reply

    Praying for you, Julie! God loves you!

  17. Marla Cilley March 4, 2013 at 4:35 pm - Reply

    My thoughts and prayers are with you!

  18. Linda Stiles March 4, 2013 at 4:24 pm - Reply

    Julie, we sooo miss you and sorry you are having to go through all this, but looking forward to seeing that beautiful smile soon and that you are “all better”.

  19. Carroll and Linda Garrett March 3, 2013 at 8:16 pm - Reply

    Julie, we sincerely miss you and will be praying for your quick recovery. You have a beautiful voice and it needs to be heard. Hope you are back soon.

  20. Linda Hammar March 1, 2013 at 10:21 pm - Reply

    Julie,my husband & I are so relieved to know you will be back!. Our daughter had a similar problem several years ago & with help from specialists recovered totally. We pray for the same results for you & look forward to seeing your cheerful smile again in our home every day.

  21. Kim Hoyle March 1, 2013 at 9:47 pm - Reply

    Really sorry for all you’ve been through. Prayers going up for your healing. Look forward to seeing you back on the TV. Get some rest.

  22. Joyce Matta March 1, 2013 at 4:18 pm - Reply

    Hi Julie, My husband and I recently moved here from the the Boston area. I faithfully watched WCVB/Boston (ABC affiliate) for my early morning news and weather for years. When we moved, I missed those faces so much. I am so happy that I have become a faithful fan of your show and my homesickness is ebbing. You are lovely and a joy. Feel better and hope to see you on air soon!

  23. Tim Bauer February 28, 2013 at 12:40 pm - Reply

    Hi Julie,
    Hope you get your needed rest and return soon. I’ll keep you in my prayers.
    P.S. Hurry up! You’re nicer to look at than Jay!:-)

    • JulieWunder February 28, 2013 at 6:50 pm - Reply

      haha. Thanks– jay is doing a great job though!
      Thank you for your thoughts and prayers. I’m working on getting better!

  24. Sharon February 25, 2013 at 10:33 pm - Reply

    I sure miss your smiling face every morning. Hope you get well soon

  25. Karen Hannah February 22, 2013 at 10:08 am - Reply

    I can’t imagine how frustrated you are! I hope everything works out for you!

  26. Lisa Ballantyne February 20, 2013 at 4:04 pm - Reply

    Julie, your viewing public understands your plight! We stand behind you and support whatever you need to do to take care of “you.” Take it easy! You are in people’s thoughts and prayers!

  27. Pat Gillespie February 20, 2013 at 1:01 am - Reply

    Julie, I fully understand why you are anxious. In 2009 I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. When surgery was performed they found the tumor was wrapped around the vocal cords and in order to remove the cancer they would have to paralyze my vocal cords. This meant I would not be able to speak above a whisper. After the surgery the good Lord left those cords open and I have a strong healthy voice. I try to find ways to use this voice to be supportive and helpful to people I come in touch with. Praying that you will be one of those people. Stay positive and never give up. God be with you. Robin Roberts says “make your mess your message”. You have lots of support, hang in there.

  28. Liz February 19, 2013 at 1:56 pm - Reply

    Glad to hear that there is a solution to the problem. Thank goodness for Doctors who cared enough to identify the problem and take steps to help you through it.
    Type, don’t talk and we look forward to seeing you on the air again soon. Liz

  29. Robin Parker February 19, 2013 at 10:41 am - Reply

    Hi Julie, Thank you for sharing this update with all of us. I miss you along with many other people. The morning news isn’t the same without you. Prayers for a speedy recovery, glad you found great doctors to get you over this illness. Hang in there, you will be fine soon! Robin

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:12 pm - Reply

      Thank you Robin!

  30. Anne February 19, 2013 at 1:32 am - Reply

    Julie hope you will be back to what you love real soon! Will keep you in my prayers. Miss your smiling face.

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:13 pm - Reply

      Thanks Anne!

  31. Charlene Brown February 19, 2013 at 1:26 am - Reply

    Julie i am so sorry about your voice, but happy that you are now getting the right medical atten to help. I know it is so hard on you with your job i will be praying for complete healing of your voice.You are one of the best always smiling and having fun with Jay in the morning that makes my day start off good at 4:30am we all need a good laugh take care and God Bless you get well soon Charlene

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:13 pm - Reply

      Jay is just really easy to pick on 🙂
      Thank you so much for the well wishes Charlene!

  32. Madeline St Onge February 19, 2013 at 1:06 am - Reply

    Julie my heart breaks for you, I pray everyday that this is all figured out and you can get back to being your sweet self again. I really wish I could give you a big hug. Hang in there and I am hoping it all works out for you sweetie

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:13 pm - Reply

      Thank you for the prayers– I really appreciate it

  33. dwayne February 19, 2013 at 12:04 am - Reply

    ill be praying for you, pray,pray,pray. GOD LOVES YOU.

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:14 pm - Reply

      Thank you Dwayne

  34. Sandy Rinehart February 18, 2013 at 11:08 pm - Reply

    Oh Julie, bless your heart. I am so glad there is an official name for the condition. I hope and pray you will be good as new very soon. I hope you are able to come back to work soon.
    Take care. Your in my thoughts and prayers.

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:14 pm - Reply

      Thank you Sandy

  35. Nikki February 18, 2013 at 10:19 pm - Reply

    Julie, I hope that you get better soon and I am real glad that you went to a specialist. I will be praying for you. We miss seeing your smiling face on the tv.

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:14 pm - Reply

      Thank you! :-))

  36. essie February 18, 2013 at 10:05 pm - Reply

    i hope you get to be back on air nextweek

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:14 pm - Reply

      Me too!

  37. Dan February 18, 2013 at 9:29 pm - Reply

    GET WELL SOON JULIE!!!! I need a motivator for the AVL Marathon in September!

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:16 pm - Reply

      Oh I’ll be back!!! You will do awesome! It’s going to be such a cool race!

  38. Rick Hill February 18, 2013 at 9:19 pm - Reply


    We sure have missed you on the air the last few mornings. Jay Siltzer gives a good weather forecast, but WNC wants to see Julie to go with our morning coffee! All joking aside, please know that when I go to 7:30 morning Mass tomorrow at the Basilica (across from the Asheville Civic Center) I will light a 24 hour candle in honor of you and in honor of your personal prayer intentions (especially your health). I have arranged to have a Mass said for your mother (Amy? Wunder) later this year. Have you considered accumulating all your recipes and putting them together and publish them in a local bookstore? I feel sure it would sell among the viewers of WNC. My best, Rick Hill

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:17 pm - Reply

      Aw thanks Rick. Jay is doing an awesome job!
      Thank you for the prayers. It really means a lot.
      Thank you also for remembering my Mom– Amy Wunder– we miss her everyday and it has been very hard to be sick without being able to get help from you Mom. I really appreciate you.

  39. Donnie Clouse February 18, 2013 at 8:33 pm - Reply

    Hope you are better soon. Miss your smiling face. We are praying for a full recovery.

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:17 pm - Reply

      Thank you

    • gail and jim March 29, 2013 at 9:01 pm - Reply

      julie, glad we found you! we have been wondering where you were. hope you recover soon. we miss your bright personality and sweet smile. blessings to you.

  40. Eric February 18, 2013 at 8:23 pm - Reply

    I’m glad the docs at Wake think they have a good plan. We miss you in the mornings, but take your time and do what’s best. Like someone above, I remember the guy at WRAL too.

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:18 pm - Reply

      Thank you!

  41. Abby Bates February 18, 2013 at 7:36 pm - Reply

    Prayers for you, Julie…….

  42. Ron Frankl February 18, 2013 at 7:19 pm - Reply

    Sometimes the best result is merely to know what it is that you’re facing. I hope that this diagnosis and rest provide you with the relief that you need. Feel better, we’ll all be here when you’re ready to return.

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:18 pm - Reply

      Yes– limbo is never fun

  43. james cannon February 18, 2013 at 7:03 pm - Reply

    As a minister i can relate to your fear of losing your voice. It sounds like the situation is in good medical hands. We will be paying for you and hope you are back on the air soon!

  44. Susan Jackson February 18, 2013 at 5:28 pm - Reply

    Glad to hear that! Was thinking the last time I saw you your voice sounded weak. So glad you reached out to the experts. Looking forward to having you back for good! (:

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:19 pm - Reply

      Yeah, it was quite a struggle before I left work. I’m getting better!

  45. Denise Vess February 18, 2013 at 5:11 pm - Reply

    I sure hope you do get well soon! And as much as you miss being on air we also miss your smiling face, now my husband and myself know where you have been. You will be in my prayers and hope your well soon.

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:20 pm - Reply

      Thank you Denise

  46. Michele Hubbs February 18, 2013 at 2:54 pm - Reply

    Julie, I will pray for you. You are excellent at your profession, and I believe God will bless you and heal you so that you will go back to doing what you love. Hang in there!

    • JulieWunder February 19, 2013 at 1:20 pm - Reply

      Thank you so much!

  47. Cindy February 18, 2013 at 2:41 pm - Reply

    Hang in there and do what the doctors say. We will all be here waiting your healthy return to WLOS. In this fast paced society we often forget that we do so much that rest is almost an impossible request. Take care, REST and get well.

  48. Bonnie February 18, 2013 at 2:27 pm - Reply

    Get well soon Julie…miss you in the morning the three muskateers just are not the same!! Although Frank is doing a good job if keeping Jay on his toes !!!LOL

  49. Sharon James February 18, 2013 at 2:12 pm - Reply

    Hope you get better soon we miss you in the morning. Praying for you.

  50. Annie @ What's Annie Making February 18, 2013 at 2:00 pm - Reply

    I hope you feel better soon Julie! I’m glad you finally have a diagnosis and that there is a good therapy that will help you get you back up on your feet. I’m good friends with some SLPs and I’ve heard them talk about how many famous people have muscle tension dysphonia, so you are in good company 🙂

  51. John Whittemore February 18, 2013 at 1:54 pm - Reply

    Get well soon. Miss you in the mornings. I remember when I lived in Chapel Hill, the sports guy on WRAL, Channel 5, Tom Suiter was off the air for a year because of similar problem with his vocal chords. He basically had to re-learn how to talk to avoid hurting them, but he made it all the way back. I’m sure you will too. Just take your time and you’ll be back and better than ever.

  52. Margaret McGinnis February 18, 2013 at 1:50 pm - Reply

    Julie, I am truly sorry. You are in my thoughts and prayers as you go thru this… I miss you, and your beautiful smile. Hope to see you back on the news and weather real soon! Love and prayers.. <3

  53. Mary Beth Wilde February 18, 2013 at 1:23 pm - Reply

    Hope you are back in full voice shortly. Is WLOS going to alow your healing time or will you be job hunting? People seem to disappear at WLOS sometimes. All the the best to you

  54. Teresa Watson February 18, 2013 at 12:54 pm - Reply

    I am truly sorry for your voice problem. ( sing in my profession and understand the seriousness of voice loss I pray yours will be back to 100% really soon. We miss you too. You’re on e of THE BEST weather people WLOS has ever had. Please get well soon

  55. lisa McKinney February 18, 2013 at 12:47 pm - Reply

    it won’t cure your vocal cord stress but it will make it easier to talk and make your throat feel better it works for me and I have sinus and allergy. problems take honey and squeezed lemon juice amount is up to you warm and drink. hope it helps and hope you feel better

  56. Esther Sorensen February 18, 2013 at 12:24 pm - Reply

    Oh Julie, I am sorry to read all you are going thru with your voice. Please take care, you are bright ray of sunshine on the news! Miss seeing you but I know you will be back very soon.

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