Better Than Medicine

A young nurse called me in to play for a patient.  A woman in her 80s was moaning and tossing in her bed.  The nurse spoke to her gently and said, “The harpist is here to play for you.  Listen to the beautiful music.”  I played for about 10 minutes, during which, the woman’s moans decreased.  She looked at me intently for a minute or so, and then looked like she was fighting to stay awake.  Her eyes closed, would open suddenly, and then would close again.  After 10 minutes, she slept.  The nurse checked her vitals and smiled at me.  She said, “This woman had been in pain for a couple of days, and hasn’t been able to sleep much.  Morphine didn’t seem to help her.  Thank you for playing for her. Would you please play for the patient in the next room?”

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