Thursday, July 1, 2004

Trish #24

Trish was tired today. In fact, she spent much of it in bed. Her neurologist tells me that her team is delighted with Trish's progress. After all, last week she came into the unit unable to walk or swallow. Today, she can walk slowly with the help of a walker. She can eat many things and she can swallow, at least thick liquids.

Thanks to God for all of that.

Tonight, as I was getting ready to leave the hospital, Trish said to me, " I think I need to listen to a lot of music. I think music will help me recover my thoughts."

"How about us singing Amazing Grace?" I asked. "You know that really well."

"That sounds good," she agreed.

So I began to sing:"Amazing grace how sweet the sound ..."

To my sorrow, I heard her quote all the words to the song but without any melody.

"Honey," I told her, "you are SAYING the words. Talking is not singing."

"I know,"she said. "I hear the melody in my head. I just won't come out." "Lets try again," I suggested.

So I started to sing again. This time she tried to vary the pitch of her voice as best she could.

I noticed that she was finding a few of the notes. Then, for a few bars at least, she found the harmony. In her shaky voice, colored by all the trauma and confusion of this month, she sang with me:

"Through many dangers toils and snares, I have already come
Tis grace that brought me safe thus far and grace will lead me on."

I lost it. I held her and began to sob.

Tears filled her eyes in response to my own emotion.

"I don't want to upset you," I said.

"I love you," she responded.

"I want nothing in this world more than for you and I to just sing together," I told her.

"We will. We will" she responded.

Weeping endures for the night. But Trish and I have already been through the night. Its morning now; it is time for joy.

The nights of our lives have the power, if we will only allow them, to wipe away the illusions and foolishness that grip our souls. Each morning thus brings a fresh opportunity to recover all that is truly valuable and important in our lives.

The performance tonight at Barrow's Neurological Institute, Rehab Unit # 18, will win no Dove Awards. But it sure was music to my ears!

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