About CMTS

Creative Music Therapy Solutions is now over a decade old!! We have grown from a team of four to a team of fifteen.

Creative Music Therapy Solutions Inc., provides Music Therapists for permanent as well as temporary positions, working with clients in their homes and in established facilities.

Music Therapy and Long time Love…

By Shannon Westlake, BA, BMT, MTA

February, the month of Valentines Day and love is quickly approaching.  As a music therapist who works in Long Term Care, I have the opportunity to see some amazing examples of lasting love through trying circumstances.  I can only imagine how difficult it must be for couples who have lived most of their lives together to adjust to the change when one’s health declines to the point where they must be admitted to a care home.  However, it truly warms my heart to see the lasting connection in many of these couples.

Take for example Mr. and Mrs. B.  When Mrs. B was admitted to the care home, Mr. B became a quick fixture at the facility.  He would come in every day, all day long to spend time with his wife.  When she was napping he would interact with other residents and join in on activities that were happening.  Any time that Mrs. B was awake and able to, Mr. B would bring her to music therapy groups.  Mr. B. would hold his wife’s hand and encourage her to participate- demonstrating how to play the maraca or singing along with the songs.  Although she wasn’t always able to participate to a great degree, the way she smiled at his efforts was charming.  I could tell that it made all the difference that it was him beside her, cheering her on.

Another beautiful couple, Mr. and Mrs. G, loved to dance.  During the music therapy groups they would often get up and dance together.  Even though Mr. G’s Alzheimer’s was progressed to the level where he had difficulty with many day to day tasks, when he took his wife in his arms once more something came alive inside him and boy he could dance!  He would twirl her around the room and move his hips to the rhythm of the music.  All the while his eyes stayed on her with an adoration that was clear to all watching.  Speaking with Mrs. G, she once told me that in those moments she felt like it was years ago and they were out on the ballroom floor together again.

I am humbled to see the lasting love that these couples share.  Some of them have celebrated 50 year anniversaries or even more!  On one particular day as I was leading a music therapy group, a wife of a resident informed me that it was their anniversary that day.  The group recognized their celebration together with applause, and I played Al Jolson’s “The Anniversary Song” for them.  After, I asked: “What’s the secret to a long, lasting, happy marriage? Do you have any advice for the rest of us?”  She looked at her husband with love in her eyes, then looked at me, and said “Don’t sweat the small stuff, and never go to bed angry”.

And so, with that sage advice, I will leave you with the lyrics to The Anniversary Song.  May you find love and happiness this February and may it last many years.

Oh, how we danced on the night we were wed
We vowed our true love, though a word wasn’t said
The world was in bloom, there were stars in the skies
Except for the few that were there in your eyes

Dear, as I held you close in my arms
Angels were singing a hymn to your charms
Two hearts gently beating, murmuring low
“Darling, I love you so”

The night seemed to fade into blossoming dawn
The sun shone anew but the dance lingered on
Could we but recall that sweet moment sublime
We’d find that our love is unaltered by time

Dear, as I held you close in my arms
Angels were singing a hymn to your charms
Two hearts gently beating, murmuring low
“Darling, I love you so”