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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Grandma's Music Therapy


My dad and I went to visit my grandma yesterday. She's 94.5 years old, her eyesight is almost totally gone, and her hearing is not far behind. She has had dementia for nearly the past decade, and lost her ability to walk about half a year ago due to spinal degeneration and pain. For several months, due to severe pain and immobility, she was mostly bedridden, and so heavily medicated that she was either asleep or awake-but-not-really-there.

But when we showed up yesterday, we found her in the middle of a music therapy session. Funny thing about dementia: It saps you of your present, and most of your past -- but sometimes leaves intact very distant memories, like, in my grandma's case, her childhood home, filled with her siblings (she's 1 of 5), parents, and assorted other relatives.

And, it turns out, music: golden oldies and folk from her younger years. As soon as her music therapist starts to play, grandma lights up, and despite very poor hearing and memory, sings along, recalling (almost) every word. And after the song is done, grandma is clearer and brighter and more able to communicate, telling us how much fun she's having.


Richie Jay

5 comments:

Brett Kaplan said...

This is just amazing

Pam said...

As I said yesterday when I saw it posted on FB... the power of music.. very moving and touching...Well done Richie!

Lindsi said...

This just made me cry. It is nice to see her so alive and happy

Anonymous said...

This video was so awesome. Thanks for sharing it, richie. I cried...

Linda said...

This is so touching -amazing!