Music talks to us on a primordial level that is much lower than our conscious awareness on a daily basis. We identify with it because it makes us smile, cry, be brave, and be introspective.
Simply put, there isn’t much that a good piece of music can’t do to make things better. A carefully chosen melody can be the ideal remedy for anxiety or tension, and a gentle refrain might be the best way to calm a disturbed mind.
Just ask Boston’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center patient transporter Lindon Beckford. Since he was a young child, he has been singing. To him, what matters is that he can use his voice to make the world and himself a little bit more bearable.
Since he can remember, Beckford has been serenading people, but even he couldn’t have predicted the response when he performed for the patients he was transporting.
“I was always singing at work. I was always singing as a child growing up, so it was just a natural thing. It was more for a comforting thing…” said Beckford.
“… So I did that just to comfort myself, but all of a sudden I get to realize people was listening to me.”
Beckford started using singing in his practice after seeing that it was beneficial. He has spent more than 30 years working at the same hospital, giving him ample opportunity to perfect a variety of methods for calming worried patients.
He explained: “Depending on the conversation that I hear… is the patient in pain? What song can I sing to relieve them.
“At the end when I get them to their procedure or back to their room they will tell me, ‘you know, you make this trip from here to there so much easier because of your singing’.”
It’s just a way for Beckford to communicate something he already understands and loves. But for his patients, it can mean all the difference in the world.
“I remember the first time a patient journeyed with me, I was taking her to the cath lab, and she started doing harmonies for what I was singing, I’m like ‘oh’, it was so amazing, I’m like ‘wow’, and ever since then that happened a few times,” Beckford said.
Everyone can see that Beckford genuinely cares about the persons he is carrying. His voice is a comforting companion that reassures them that everything will be OK during a time when they may be uncertain, frightened, bewildered, or even scared. There aren’t many things more valuable than that.
Check out Beckford’s singing in the video down below:
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