We were told not to ask any questions about their illnesses, and Daniel and I were shown how to sanitize our hands before and after entering every room. The kids ranged from bouncing baby to tall teen. Some seemed in great spirits and health while others were struggling gravely, but the task and the goal was straightforward- to get them to smile.
The first little little girl I visited in the Children’s wing of Cedars-Sinai was about 10 years old. Her parents were both in the room. It was quiet and dark. She was very still and the machines made more sound then she did. I saw she had some silhouettes of owls hanging above her bed, and after a few words I began “The Owl and The Pussycat”. She hooted and miaued very softly. I could see she loved animals, so next I sang “Froggy Went A Courtin’”. Miss Mousie’s silly voice made her giggle very softly. And that made her parents smile.
Later at the Children’s Hospital we sat in a common room and sang for the patients who could leave their rooms. There weren’t many. One young man who joined us contributed colors for the rhyming song “Jenny Jenkins”. Carnelion and slate? Good ones, dude. Nearly had me stumped.
I am thankful to Pickleberry Pie for including me in their program. The gift the kids gave me was big and beautiful, and I am grateful for the time I was able to share with them.
I am happiest when I can do meaningful work. This is the work I love.