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Time to finish holiday shopping!

Christmas DeliveryMusical Reflections can assist you with your holiday shopping. We have several “stocking stuffer” gifts for those on your list:

Please let us know if we can assist you … we look forward to connecting!

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Back by Popular Demand – “The Gift of Christmas Peace” Video

VideoEvery year, many of you request viewing the video “The Gift of Christmas Peace” to bring you peace and serenity as you move into the busy month of December. It features a beautiful song (Pachelbel’s Canon/The First Noel), an uplifting written holiday message and tranquil winter scenes. Please share with your family and friends! (It is easily available at this link or click here if you prefer to watch it on YouTube.)

Our hope is it brings you the gift of Christmas peace for the upcoming month … enjoy!

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I Love Music Gadgets!

0971982244We hear this a lot and it is our joy to offer a really different and unique music gadget for all the special people on your holiday list:

If you have questions about any of these gift ideas, reach out to us at Tami@MusicalReflections.com or 952-829-1919. We will do our best to help you determine optimal holiday gift choices for those on your list!

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Time to begin thinking of the holidays!

Ready for HolidaysOnce the calendar is flipped to November, it’s time to start thinking about the holidays, isn’t it?!

We are all about peace and calm – for either yourself or those on your holiday gift list. All of our offerings focus on helping you relax, experience calm, reduce stress and feel peace. Whether it’s harp CDs, downloads, books, and musical devices (Amazing Mini Music Machine, Angelic Vibrations MP3 player), we are happy to be of service to you. Musical Reflections is available to help with holiday gift ideas!

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Live vs. Recorded Music

Live MusicWhen I present, one of my most frequent questions is “Will recorded music be as good as/helpful as live music?”

Live music offers a personal touch and there’s no substitute for that! Further, live music will almost always be more potent because of the vibrations, the resonance of the instrument and the healing presence of the therapeutic musician.

That said, recorded music that is created with the intention to help in the healing process is much more therapeutic than the TV! Recorded music is also more practical – it has the possibility of reaching many more people for longer durations of time than live musicians.

If you are a hospital administrator, you probably want both live and recorded music in your healthcare setting. Certified harp practitioners playing live at the individual bedside and recorded CDs or licensed music on the closed-circuit TV system is well documented in research annuals as being helpful. Please feel free to contact us if you wish to discuss further.

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Additional Thoughts about Therapeutic Music in the Healthcare Environment

HealthcareThis will be our last blog post in this on-going series of discussing therapeutic music in the healthcare setting. I have a few thoughts or observations from doing this work since 1996 (yes, it’s really been that long!):

  • Sometimes I am not told much about the patient, the family and/or their situation. Even without information, I am amazed at the miracles that occur at the bedside with the harp. It is an intuitive process and unfolds as it is supposed to.
  • Not usually, but occasionally, patients refuse harp therapy. This is one thing patients are empowered to say yes or no. While patients can’t say “no” to a nurse, they are empowered to make a choice about music. If they say no, I never take it personally.
  • Patients, families and staff – all benefit from the musical bedside experience. Sometimes, the caregivers or staff need the music as much as anyone.

It has been our joy to share examples and stories over the past several weeks/months about this beautiful work that we are so passionate about. Please contact us if you’d like more information.

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Grief in the Hospital and Music’s Role

Music and griefGrief can be a common emotion in the hospital setting. What role does music play? Read on …

Before I entered the patient’s room with my harp, I was told the mother (patient) and daughter (caregiver in the room) were grieving. One of the first things they said to me was they lost a son/brother four months ago. I’m not sure what the mother’s physical illness was (the reason she was hospitalized) but I had the sense that whatever it was was completely predicated by grief and sadness. There was a heaviness, a deep sorrow prevalent in their room.

I used the musical principle of Inclusive Attention. (Inclusive Attention is the art of being attentive to the patient and modifying the music to accommodate for the mental, emotional, physical, and/or spiritual state. It is asking, “What is meeting me here? What am I observing? How do I need to respond?” The heaviness of grief, mourning, and intense sadness is appropriately met with music that is sad, melancholic, and minor. This is contrary to what many people think, but by meeting grief with sad, melancholic music, you acknowledge and honor the patient’s condition or situation and give him or her permission to feel and release the feelings.)

I played music that was quite somber for this mother and daughter. As tears flowed and the feelings of grief and mourning began to lift slightly, it was appropriate to transition the music very slowly from minor keys into major keys. The mood and the music shifted, ebbing and flowing between minor and major. (This is a sub-conscious way of demonstrating that it is vital to feel/express sorrow and dark feelings, as well as OK to feel hope and lightness, sometimes within seconds/minutes of each other … all a natural part of the grieving process.)

I ended our harp therapy session with Amazing Grace which felt like an important connection for them, as well as connecting with their transitioned loved one. While I was playing, I also had the feeling that this mother’s son was hovering above her shoulders and crown chakra. I mentioned this to the mother as I left and she hugged me saying, “This gives me so much comfort. Thank you…”

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Playing the Harp in the Hallway of the Hospital

Hospital corridorI play the harp in patients’ rooms, but also in the hospital corridors or hallways.

Staff who do such important work (housekeeping, unit secretaries, nurse managers, etc.) may not be thanked for their contributions and they need the music as much as anyone. When I play in the hallways or at a nursing station, these hard-working employees can pause for a moment to “fill their wells.”

Playing in these locations, I see very busy healthcare staff and stressed family members stopping for a moment to connect with their breath, lower their shoulders to release tension and just be. Many comment that they have never heard the harp or never seen it played up close and in person. Having it on the hospital floor offers a personal touch and a gentle reminder of self-care.

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Music for Caregivers, too

CaregivingThe following story highlights how music can benefit the caregiver, as much as the patient.

Right before I entered the hospital room with my harp, the patient and her spouse had just had a discussion of “no code” status.

The husband (caregiver) was sitting at his wife’s shoulder and I set up my harp right next to him so I could see both the patient and him.  At times, I felt like I was playing as much to him as I was for his wife … he “drank in” the music!

At one point, the patient turned to her husband and their eyes locked. Within these few moments of deep connection, they expressed a lifetime. It was beautiful to witness, as well as facilitate with this paradoxical instrument that is so gentle, yet so powerful.

As I was leaving, the husband said, “Thank you! I believe I enjoyed the music as much, and maybe more than my wife!”

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Music and Emotions

music and emotionsMusic connects us to our emotions, and can be a way to process and release feelings to help with our healing journey. This is an example.

Before I entered the next patient’s room, two nurses came up and said, “This patient wants to die … he feels hopeless.” I started by playing “Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” which is a song of hope. And then, as I played for him, I was very aware of using entrainment (playing slower and s-l-o-w-e-r) so he could rest, sleep (similar to how the CD “Calm as the Night” is created).

As I finished and was moving my harp out of the room, he gently rolled over and quietly said, “I now know I’m going to be just fine.”

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