Isn't it crazy how the tone of voice in which almost anything is said can completely change the meaning and interpretation of what it means? For example:
"Ali ANNE" (said with inflection on ANNE and in a stern voice is punishing)
"Ali Anne" (said in a soft and loving voice is endearing)
"I love spinach" (said in a sarcastic tone means that you actually hate spinach - said in an exuberant tone means that you actually DO love spinach!)
Tone on voice is one of the things that we who are in chronic pain can control, and the power of this tool is invaluble for the way we relate to the ones we love. My husband called today, and I have been very sick basically on bedrest all day. I had the choice to either sound sad and dejected or to sound peaceful and joyful amidst the pain that I am enduring. If I chose to sound depressed and angry it would very likely have ruined the rest of my husband's day. He would be worrying about me, probably wondering if I was angry with him, wishing that I could live above the pain ... As it was I chose to be peaceful and joyful when I talked to him. He knows that I am sick, he doesn't need a continual reminder how bad I feel. What he does need is to know that even though I am in pain and sick, I am at peace and I have joy.
It may seem like a small thing, but the effect that our tone of voice has on our spouces is huge. Even on days when I don't feel like being happy - the choice to love my husband enough to choose happiness in my tone of voice is one that I can make with God's grace.