A Real Holiday Story

The following was posted to the Yahoogroups Acoustic Guitar group.  I don’t know who posted it, but my hat goes off to him…

For the past twenty odd years or so a couple times each month I take my guitar over to the local hospital and play for patients who request it.  This is usually a fun and fulfilling endeavor.  I usually play fun covers or anthing that can get folks singing along to take thier mind somewhere outside of te hospital.  This morning I was all prepaired to play a bunch of cheery Christmas carols, but the hospital chaplain took me into the room of a young ooy, 14, very, very ill from cancer.  As his family sat around him, his parents holding his hands, I played soft instrumental hymns for about half an hour when the heart monitor tried to slip quetly out but thefamily asked me to stay and play a while longer  This is the first time a patient died while I was  playing.  A very young life ending just before Christmas.

Very hard, very sad.  His mother thanked me and asked me if I would play at his memorial service.  Of course I said I would, but I really just felt overwhelmed with sadness and sorrow.

Very difficult moving on to JIngle Bells and Santa Claus is coming to town after that, but a handful of sick young children singing along and then reacting to a visit from Santa himself instantly took hold of me and transported me elsewhere.

Still feeling very emotional.  My friend Beth, the hospital chaplain is an amazing person.  I still have so, so much to learn, but time is gonna run out on me sooner or later…