is the grass any bluer...

is the grass any bluer...
on the other side?

Friday, October 15, 2010

Vivaldi, Vistas, and Voice

I've been a little reluctant to write the past few days, I've been distracted by all the goings-on in my community, concerned with the miners being rescued from miles below the surface of Chile and learning the particulars of my next cases for the standardized patient program, but mostly, my thoughts have been with my friend, Diana, and all that she has been going through with the sudden illness and now death of her great-nephew. 

The decision was made yesterday to remove Tristen from life support and he passed from this life around 6:15 last night - he slipped into a coma last Saturday due to bacterial meningitis, and although his tiny 13 month old body fought for almost an entire week, the infection caused swelling in his brain and therefore, there had been little or no brain activity for days. When I left the hospital on Sunday afternoon to return to Lexington, his mother, Amber, was lying in the bed with him, stroking his hair, kissing his cheeks, and gently tugging on his toes, trying to get a response from him.  

The days that followed must have been extremely difficult and I know that Di has been a pillar of strength for her niece throughout this entire journey, and truthfully, Di herself is not physically well, takes oral chemo daily, and needless to say, she really ought to take it easy on herself...but she doesn't. She's always the first to offer to help anyone in need.  She will drop everything to drive from Florence and come and get my sorry ass and drive me to Northern Kentucky so I can be with my family, without hesitation or concern for her own health, and will not take 'no' for an answer, either.  She's just one of those treasures that I'm lucky enough to call friend, and for whatever reason, I was there on Sunday when Di got the call, and we went to the hospital and God gave me the words to say so that I could pray with Amber and her family in Children's Hospital. I'll be honest, though, I had to pinch myself to keep from breaking down during my prayers, and even then, I could not stop the grief from making its way into my voice.  

I guess if there's one thing I want to blog/talk/squawk about today, it's how much our Voice means to us.  There is the gentle Voice of God that calls us to bring our pain and sorrow to Him, and His promise is to give us rest.  

There is the Voice of encouragement that all our friends and family bring to us, the joy of listening to them speak about the blessings - large and small - in their daily lives...the voice of our children and parents as they call our name...that voice is important to hear, listen to and appreciate as well.

How much more, though, do we treasure our own voices?   Our Voice is one of the most precious gifts we have been given, is it not?  From our baby days when our cry produces reactions in every form of human life upon this earth, because there's no one who can ignore a baby's cry...a baby's cry is a beautiful thing to hear.  We all have been there, done that, bought the Pampers...

So why am I yammering on about all that?  It is because a dear friend of mine has been struggling with the loss of his voice for a few months now, and so my prayers are with him today as well.  Tom is a tremendous singer, he sings for me when I have a piano gig for the nursing homes, he sings duets with me in my home and even let me talk him into auditioning for Beguiled Again last year (even though he's not a dancer, he sang Secret Love and killed it, I gotta say) -- but the loss of his ability to sing has devastated him. He can still talk, but he's raspy and hoarse and it's hard to understand him, he's even made index cards to tell his friends and family what he wants to say...but my heart breaks for him more than anything because he's been unable to sing.  And he la-la-la-loves to sing.  He's tried all the home cures, but was referred to a specialist this week after (finally) having it medically analyzed, and thank the Lord, he learned there are no signs of anything serious, it's irritation from allergies that's causing has silenced his voice,  but he's having to go to a speech specialist to help him learn how to speak and sing again.  His goal is to get well enough to sing Vivaldi with our choir at Christmas, and my prayer is that he will even be well enough to sing, as he does every year, O Holy Night on Christmas Eve.  

Please pray that he will once again find his Voice, realize there are all new vocal vistas before him, and for all who have no voice.  Many in the world face overwhelming hopelessness.  A little love, a touch, a smile, and compassion from us can wipe away many tears.  God can use us to turn sadness to happiness, to help another to live and to die with a sense of God's presence and love.  

O Lord, give us eyes to see, hearts to love and hands to serve those in need. 

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