JEWEL: I am an 82-year old widow and, along with Susan, my 60-year old partner, we are what’s known as “bedside singers,” visiting patients in a hospice facility who are terminally ill and dying. I began doing this after the death of my husband. We bring music and love, comfort and joy to the patients and their families.
SUSAN: I too was motivated by my personal loss of loved ones. That made me understand the grief these families were experiencing. I also experienced the healing of my own heart through song.
What’s your encore story? Share it now.
JEWEL: As older people, we have many experiences to share and we can listen with love and empathy. In our case, we are sharing music that they are familiar with, from their lifetime. The patients seem to enjoy it so much. They often awake from their pain to join in, oxygen tube and all.
SUSAN: Often we visit patients who appear to be comatose and the families are present grieving. But when we begin to sing, something special happens! The patient begins to move and many begin to sing. Tears fall…ours and theirs. If you have music in your heart, you can share it with others no matter what your age. The patients don’t judge the quality of your voice. They feel your love. We hope we are alleviating some suffering.