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The Health Scare That Almost Ended Delta Goodrem’s Career

Songstress Delta Goodren On Spring Racing Beauty

Australia’s first woman of song Delta Goodrem reveals she suffered a health scare that almost ruined her career.

Aussie singing icon Delta Goodrem has broken her silence about a health scare that almost robbed her of her singing voice and her career.

Delta, 35, says that she suffered a severe calcification of a salivary gland towards the end of 2018 that led her to the United States for treatment and surgery.

However, further complications traumatized her a nerve in her tongue leading to a paralysis so severe that she could not speak and spent a year in rehabilitation learning to talk – and sing – all over again.

delta goodrem
Delta’s devastating health scare

Delta, one of Australia’s most successful recording artists and singer-songwriters, made the revelations in a carefully prepared video posted to her Instagram account overnight.

The story of her recovery is the basis for her new single Paralysed, released nationally just a few weeks ago.

“As a songwriter, I write songs from my own experiences,” she wrote on the post last night, Sunday, August 16. “I tell stories about the path I have been on, wondering if anyone else has been on a similar journey… The first step in writing this new record was a personal transformation that I didn’t know I needed in my life!

“Even though, as I am sharing today, it was a challenging one — I learned so much and I’m so grateful to be here healthy, happy and singing away.”

Delta, well-known as one of the judges on the Australian version of The Voice, recently released several self-produced music videos during the coronavirus pandemic, performing from the lounge of her Sydney home accompanied by her boyfriend Australian musician Mathew Copley.

However, her post shows video clips of her recovering in hospital post-surgery and slowly regaining her ability to speak during sometimes challenging rehabilitation sessions. There were times, she admits, that she felt her career and future were hanging in the balance as she struggled to maintain a positive attitude.

In videos included in Delta’s post she is seen crying with the frustration of trying to regain her speech, and saying: ‘This is f…..ed, I don’t want to go out. I am super embarrassed. I’m just over it, over it. I’m just trying to stay positive. My livelihood is my sound. I’m trying to decide whether this is getting any better but it doesn’t feel like it.”

Delta Goodrem's Secret To Cats Success
Delta Goodrem’s appearance in Cats

Now, however, Delta is fully recovered and ready for a new phase in her career. She hopes that people will share in and be inspired by the experiences that helped her write her song Paralysed.

“I share this with you as an artist sharing where the poetry in this song comes from and as a human who deeply feels and understands that everyone has their own story and their own challenges they are overcoming each day,” she writes.

“You never know what someone is going through and this is an extremely hard time for people. So I send this story to you with the message of hope and love. Getting through the tough times is hard, but ‘with a little time and a little hope, with a little light you never know. For a little space, for a lot of love, close your eyes and think of a better time, big dreams; open your mind for you to find a little strength inside. Stop and rewind.'”

delta goodrem
The Health Scare That Almost Ended Delta Goodrem’s Career

When Delta was just 18 and still at the beginning of her singing career, she was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a form of cancer that affects the lymphatic system that carries white blood cells around the body to fight infection, as well as groups of lymph nodes. She made a full recovery following both chemotherapy and radiation treatment and still gives her health a high priority.

Written by Michael Sheather

Michael Sheather has extensive experience in magazine journalism having fulfilled the roles of both associate editor and news editor at The Australian Women's Weekly during the past 21 years. At the same time Michael has crafted an impressive reputuation as a reporter and writer, winning multiple awards including five Journalist of the Year awards, two Story the year awards as well as being a regular finalist or runner-up in both categories. He has reported for The Weekly from the US, the United Kingdom, Indonesia, Europe, New Zealand and India and has an extraordinary list of interviewees including Thredbo survivor Stuart Diver, Prime Ministers John Howard, Malcolm Fraser, Bob Hawke and Gough Whitlam, actresses Kim Bassinger, Nicole Kidman and actor Michael J Fox, among many others.

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