Tuesday, April 10, 2012

A singing child can do wonders

Yesterday I took my daughter to school, thinking it was the day to return from Spring Break, and felt like a big doofus when I discovered that it was a Teacher Planning day. At least I felt better that there were also other parents there trying to drop off their kids. Apparently we completely overlooked the extra line at the bottom of the class newsletter: "April 9th - VPK Holiday."

So I decided to just take her with me when I went to see my dad, not knowing what I would find with the newest developments in his behavior. I prayed silently on the way there that the visit would go well.

And it did.

A nurse had dropped in to change some bandages on some of the residents, including my dad, who had some skin tears on his arm. She and I got to talking about Easter, and I found out she was also a minister. I took her aside for a moment and asked her to pray for something specific for my dad and explained his history as the son of a Baptist preacher. She then prompted my daughter to sing songs to my dad, the first of which was "Jesus Loves Me," which the nurse and I sang along with her, and at one point we switched from singing, "Jesus loves me," to "Yes, Jesus loves you," directed to my dad. Prior to that, he was only looking down and not making eye contact with us at all, even when the nurse urged him to say Hello to us. As we began to sing, he slowly looked up at my daughter, who was standing directly in front of him, and his face lit up and he even began to smile a little.

What a relief to see my dad go from looking forlorn and hopeless, to happy and hopeful again. My daughter and the nurse then sang a couple more songs, and for the rest of our visit with him, he was much more responsive and lively. Then we guided him to the dining area, where I took out the Resee's chocolate Easter egg I had bought for him, as well as two other Resee's eggs so that my daughter and I could eat one with him. He didn't say a word, but his facial expression said it all as he enjoyed eating it and gave us a little smile.

It was so good to see him, and I was very thankful for such a nice visit.

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