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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Christmas Carols/Carolling (10/02/08)

TITLE: Music Box Lullaby
By Lisa Keck


It was Christmastime 2007or at least that’s what the calendar said but I wasn’t feeling it. Oh sure, I appreciated the 200-year-old gift for all mankind that is Jesus Christ our Lord but my faith had been really tried this year. I received the diagnosis November of ’06: an unpronounceable disease would render me motherless sometime in the near future, or just the future. The hematologist/oncologist wasn’t quite sure. Then the unexpected happened— in July Mom woke up practically paralyzed.

Now I was at Wal-Mart buying Mom’s nutritional drink and adult diapers. The most independent woman I ever knew was dependant on a hired caregiver for the most basic of needs. It wasn’t quite time for the piped in music to bombard you with all Christmas, all the time so regular tunes were playing when I entered the store. Then I heard it, “Away In A Manger,” and I feared drowning in my own tears.

I can’t get emotional here, I told myself. Just think of something else. Gee that’s a pretty blouse … this isn’t working. I’m going back in time.

“Play the music-box song Mom.”
“What are you talking about?” I hate her question. She should know what I mean but this illness is taking its toll and I’ve never been able to explain her special arrangement.

“You know Mom when you play Away In A Manger but part of it sounds like a music box lullaby.” Without answering, she begins to play. I wish you could hear it. She plays the standard arrangement until the chorus and then on the furthest right side of the keyboard plays a lullaby. You still hear the fullness of the song but it sounds like someone has wound up and opened the lid of a music box.

Mom says she can do that with other songs but it only sounds right to me with this song. I’ve come back to the present. The chorus begins and it sounds so empty. Tears threaten to flow. Somehow I maintain composure and go home to Mom.

Mom wasn’t with us too much longer. The Lord graciously ender her suffering earlier this year. I can’t help but wonder if once she’d settled in There He’d strolled up to her on those Golden Streets and said, “I enjoyed that lullaby you played for Me. I have a piano right over here. Will you play for Me again My child?”

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This article has been read 464 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Anita van der Elst10/09/08
What a sweet tribute to your mom! I'm glad you were able to share it with us.
Anne Linington10/09/08
Thanks for the re-telling of this moving story.
Robyn Burke10/09/08
i love the ending. When we know Jesus and we know we have a place waiting for us in heaven, we all get happy endings don't we? Touching story.
Jan Ackerson 10/10/08
The music box imagery is very lovely in this bittersweet story!

There are several editing errors that, if fixed, would really polish this little gem.
Marlene Austin10/10/08
Very touching personal narrative. Holidays are just not the same with loved ones not with us, but what a comfort when you know they are with Him. :)
Karlene Jacobsen10/14/08
Was there a POV shift in there? I got a little confused. It's tough telling such a heartfelt story in under 750 words, I know.

Overall, this is a bittersweet story.