The role of music in my recovery and beyond

Music was always important in my life from the days listening to The Monkees singing I’m A Believer on a 6 transistor I kept hid under my pillow (I know I’m showing my age) right through today when I hear MercyMe sing You Are I Am (more on that Later).

It played a huge part in my recovery.  My kids got the same love of music though the boys have gone a little further and write and record their own.  Our daughter Amy, like me can come up with a song to fit almost any situation.  We have sent songs to help each other through different circumstances.  Shortly after my injury, she sent me a link to Little Wonders by Rob Thomas.  This has become like a theme for this journey and applies to the whole family.  The most fitting line is “And I don’t mind if it’s me you need to turn to we’ll get by” which is an offer to help any way they could in my recovery.

While I was I the hospital, Mike, our oldest son, brought his note pad and planned to work on some songs one night while giving Bonnie a rest.  His plans got changed when I kept patting the side of the bed which they had figured out was my way of asking for someone to hold my hand.  Every time he let go, I started patting again so he spent all night holding my hand.  That must have been quite a sight for the nurses.  He didn’t get much writing done that night though he did get a little sleep.

Mike and Me

Mike holding my hand

After Bryan, our youngest, got back to Okinawa where he was stationed in the Navy, he wrote a song he called “Song For Dad”.  It still brings tears every time I hear it especially the lines “remembering things that I should have said” and “wisest man I’ve ever known”.  It also refers to my new found fondness for hand holding.  You can listen here.

Music played a serious therapeutic role as well.  While at Pathways, My speech therapist, Karen Patterson suggested I try something called The Listening Program which was used by Thomas Miller, Shepherd Center’s music director.  I would listen to specially selected classical music for a specific length of time at the same times each day.  I was having trouble with one of my speech therapy assignments one day and getting very frustrated.  During my next Listening Program session, the answer came to me out of the blue as I was just listening.  Music does help your brain rewire itself.

Music continues to be a very inspiring part of my life and continuing recovery.  A couple years back, I heard a song called “You Are I Am” by MercyMe, I thought it was a really nice sounding song about ancient history featuring David, Moses, Daniel and Jesus.  I was listening to it one time and God pointed out very clearly that not all the characters in the song are ancient.  There is a line in the song that says “You tell the dead to breathe”.   During the life-flight to the hospital, they lost me twice.  It was as they were trying to revive me that I was the one God told to breathe.

About Rodney Smith

Traumatic Brain Injury Survivor. Enjoying my second chance and sharing hope.
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3 Responses to The role of music in my recovery and beyond

  1. Dixie says:

    Beautiful song!

    Like

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    Like

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