In Kings Mill hospital last Friday we were invited to play in a single bed room for a young boy who was connected to a lot of monitoring equipment and had an oxygen mask on. We played a song for him and his reaction was fairly muted but he did say that he liked it. We took our time and spoke a bit to his Dad who said that he himself was a song writer. We played some improvised music and offered the boy a shaker to see if he would like to join in. He declined it and just looked on. He was making his spider man doll move about a bit to the music and we picked up on this by changing the way that we were playing depending on how he moved the doll. Once he realised that spider man was conducting the band he couldn’t get enough of it. He had a great time determining the pace and duration of the music with his doll and he laughed and smiled as he did so. His Dad said we’d done well to get a smile out of him.
Before we left the room the boy’s dad asked if he could share some words he had written about his son being in hospital and we listened as he did so. He’d written a really moving rap about his love for his son and family. At the end he said ‘Thanks for listening to that… It’s quite hard to get people to listen’.
Music in hospitals gives people the time and space to reveal and express their emotions.