How Music Brought Me Back to Life: Ben’s Story
Being a dad is not something you can learn from a book, although you can try. Nothing can prepare you for the overwhelming love, wonder, and lack of sleep that you will experience. When my boy Elijah was born, Lucy and I knew our family was complete. From that very moment I knew that being a dad was by far, the greatest achievement of my life. We were excited to watch him grow and to learn about the world around him. From his first laugh, to his first word, to his first step, to riding without his training wheels… we knew this journey would be an exciting one with all the ups and downs of parenthood. Lucy was an amazing mum; she had a tremendous amount of love to give and incredible patience.
When Lucy was diagnosed with terminal cancer it came out of the blue and you think that it cannot be possibly be happening to you. We were scared to get Hospice West Auckland involved at first, feeling like we were giving up. They became an extension of our family who we could reach out to whenever we needed a comforting voice at the end of the phone, someone who understood what we were going through. When Lucy died, I thought, how am I going to be able to continue to be the dad that Elijah needs me to be whilst dealing with my own grief? That is when we found Libby and Music Therapy.
I am not the musical sort, but I thought that it would help Elijah to express his grief and his emotions and that we could share in that. We were not expected to play a piece but more to just explore the instruments and play with sound, essentially do what we felt like in the moment. It has been so comforting for me to lose myself in the music and for a moment I find my worries are carried away in the sounds that I am making.
In these sessions with Libby, we have laughed, and we have cried, and it has always felt like a safe space in that moment just to be. To not feel the pressure to perform, to be a dad, to be happy, to be sad but just to sit in that space of making music. It is great to know that I am not alone in my grief.
We cannot change what life deals us, but to have the support around you makes all the difference. Hospice West Auckland deserves to be supported so that they can continue to help another dad like me. I cannot thank them enough for being there for Lucy, Elijah, and myself.
CARE PACKAGE FOR DADS
You can be there for dads like Ben by supporting them with what they need to get back on their feet and be the best dads they can be for their children.
1. Music Therapy Session: $150
1. Bereavement massage: $100
2. Counselling session: $150
3. Grief and loss bereavement group: $600
To make a donation click here
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