Mother and Daughter Moment

The patient had looked out into the hallway as I was walking past and she waved me in. The patient was a woman probably in her 70s who seemed disoriented but was sitting in the chair. She had her food tray on the table in front of her. The blinds were drawn in her room and the TV was on. She also had a newspaper on the table in front of her. She seemed to have a ‘far away’ look in her eyes. The younger woman turned out to be her daughter. She was sitting on a chair closer to the door at the foot of the bed. She was very cordial and asked me about my harp. As I asked if there was a type of music her mother liked, the daughter kept asking her mom for a response. The mom appeared kind of ‘vacant’ and just nodded her head. I played some familiar tunes and a couple Broadway songs and she hummed a bit with a couple of the songs. The daughter kept trying to get a verbal response from the mother. “What Broadway shows did you like best mom? Do you remember that one mom?” the daughter asked. She seemed to be reaching, trying to engage her mother. I continued to play as the daughter began to talk with me and ask more details about the harp. She then told me she had no musical talent at all and that she was a new mom and was concerned about learning all children’s songs to be able to sing them to her baby. As the daughter talked about her baby, the mom seemed to be a bit more engaged and appeared to be listening. I suggested that if she closed her eyes she’d like and just let the music wash over her…so she did for a few minutes. By the time I was leaving, the mother seemed to be more relaxed and able to communicate.  She smiled and thanked me as I wished them well and was leaving.=

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