Harp and Hands in Harmony

The curtain was open in this room, the patient was lying with her eyes closed, not moving, clearly in pain.  Her mother stood at her head, lightly massaging her head and neck, looking up as I came into view and smiling.  I noodled out of the song I was playing and gradually into a very slow noodle, back and forth, rhythmically repeating what I was doing, getting softer and slower as the mother’s hands doing the massage matched the music, also getting softer and slower, until gradually it appeared that the patient was resting more comfortably, perhaps sleeping.  The mother mouthed her words of thanks to me as I moved away, later approaching me in the hall. She expressed her thanks, telling me how grateful they both were for the relaxation the music brought.  “I could barely hear you coming down the hall and couldn’t figure out what it was but when you came into view, I could feel everything in me relax. I am so grateful. Thank you for both of us.  My husband died in here 20 days ago and we both were close to a panic attack. I was trying to help us both by massaging her head and you took that terrible anxiety away immediately. Thank you so much.”

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