Learning To Love You More




Assignment #31
Spend time with a dying person.

Jeff Harrington
Albuquerque, New Mexico USA



Spending time with Helen Ewing
I recently found out from my mom that my old piano teacher from 5th to 9th grade was in the last stages of life. She was not sick, but in pain because of arthritis. I went to visit her on Sunday, April 15th, which was Easter. Helen can't go to church so my mom gave me a copy of the cassette that they record for people who can't come. I gave it to her and we sat down while her sister made lunch for her. I didn't really know what to talk about at first but then the conversation got rolling after I brought up the piano. She went on and on about how her fingers hurt so bad and she's frustrated because it is very hard to play now. I felt bad but it was neat to see an old person telling me about one of her important activities. I told her I had still been practicing and learning new things on my own. She wanted to hear so I played "New York State of Mind" by Billy Joel for her. She said she never much cared for "that kind of music" but that I played it well. She said, "you must have had a great teacher." We had some laughs. Around 2, she had to take some pain medicine and a bunch of other pills and her sister, Barbara told me that Helen needed to rest for a while. So Helen gave me a hug and offered me a candy, like when I took lessons from her, and I left. She's still alive today.