Using Music to Make Connections
--by SissyLee, posted Mar 20, 2018
The first resident was not verbal but was incredibly engaged with the music. She was up in a wheelchair and smiled broadly while intently watching me and my hands. If I gave a special flourish to a piece, she would laugh. Ambient noise that got loud caused her to look about in a concerned way. I loved every minute of playing for this charming elder. When I left, I waved goodbye and she wiggled her fingers at me, smiling again. I heard the CNA talking to her about the harp and she made some aahhh aahhhh sounds back.
Her room mate was also there, but she was not present in a way I could discern. She went from being asleep to very slumped in her chair and her eyes were remote. She did have on a helmet. Maybe a bit of the music slipped into her soul.
I visited an old cowboy who loved country music -- he was not doing well -- his eyes were sunk and his color ashen. But the CNA said he loved music and visitors so I played and gave a few pieces a little country swing. He fell sound asleep. He came to as I packed up but did not respond to my voice or look at me. I wished him happy trails.