My youngest little sister has come to visit and is staying with me for a few days. She is here to spend some time with our parents, do some running around for them and just visit.
She and I spent today with them. My sister shopping with our mother, myself keeping our father company. It was a pleasant day for all of us. Since my father's illness, we have all tried to do more for our parents.
The best part of the day, however, came just as evening was settling in. My father was talking to my sister about some music another sister had purchased for him, music from his youth, his time. Music that I remembered hearing when I was very young, music that defined my parents. He asked her if she wanted to hear some of it and she, as only a daughter will do, said of course to her father.
My father and sister went into another room to listen to some of that music. I stayed where I was, lying on the sofa. The house was quiet and as I lay there, I began to listen to the voices in the other room. My father had been a little down in spirit but suddenly as he spoke to my sister about the music he was playing, his voice took on a different tone. One of life and youth. I listened as he spoke about certain songs and their meanings. The song that he connected to his courtship of my mother, songs he had danced to, songs that brought back memories. It was the sound of music lifting a soul.
I also heard the sound of my sister's laughter as she listened to stories I've heard from my father but were new to her. And then, he began to sing. He's always sung along to music that he liked, but not for some time now. Songs not heard in a very long time, but he knew all the words and his voice was strong.
I turned my head to look at them. My father sitting in a chair, my sister on the floor at his feet, with her back to me. I felt that if I moved, I would break a spell. So, I stayed where I was. Not moving, with eyes closed and listening. It felt as if time had stopped in that room, that it was a perfect moment, fragile and priceless. Music, laughter and the quiet voices of a daughter and father enjoying conversation. An unexpected and rare moment in time. I'm grateful that I was there to see and hear it. Thank you Janie.
"All my possessions for a moment in time."