Monday, September 1, 2008

Walking slowly together

On Saturday (I work on Saturdays) I went to pick up D from his cottage.  I hadn't seen him for two and a half months, and I wasn't sure how he would react when I showed up after all this time. I mean, I told him I'd be on a leave of absence, and I explained that I would be returning at the end of August, and we would resume music therapy.  Since D doesn't use speech, and he's rather a quiet man (at least he is when he's with me), I wasn't sure how he had experienced my announcement.  

Anyway, he smiled when he saw me this past Saturday, and I must admit I was glad to see him too.  He pulled me to the door, and we were off.  It was a quiet morning, and D tends to walk- more like an amble actually- very slowly and deliberately.  His heel always goes down firmly first and then the rest of his foot follows along in sort of a rolling motion, his toes always pointed out. He holds on to me- to my hand- with his right hand, and his left hand usually goes up and rests gently on his chest or on the drawstring from his jacket (or the drawstring on his shorts).

A good word to describe D's pace, I'd say, is "leisurely".  Very.  I have often found it difficult to walk with him because I have to slow down quite a bit in order to not end up dragging him along. The thing about this particular day was that I had just returned from taking my own "leisurely" break.  As we walked slowly together, I immediately noticed how much less hurried I was, and how it was so much easier than usual for me to adjust myself to D's gentle rhythm rather than indulging the tendency I have to move along at my usually frantic trot.  

As we strolled along D hummed quietly, and I enjoyed listening to his singing- not a particularly wide range, but he was very present and lovely to hear.  Nice... to slow down and pay attention.

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