You are My Sunshine, My only Sunshine” (Be prepared to get watery eyes!)
Like any good mother, when Karen found out that another baby was on the way,
she did what she could to help her 3-year-old son, Michael, prepare for a
sibling. They found out that the new baby was going be a girl, and day
after day, night after night, Michael sang to his sister in mommy’s tummy.
He was building a bond of love with his little sister before he even met
her. The pregnancy progressed normally for Karen, an active member of the
Panther Creek United Methodist Church in Morristown, Tennessee.
In time, the labor pains came. Soon it was every five minutes, every three,
every minute. But serious complications arose during delivery and Karen
found herself in hours of labor.
Would a C-section be required? Finally, after a long struggle, Michael’s
little sister was born. But she was in very serious
condition. With a siren howling in the night, the ambulance rushed the
to the neonatal intensive care unit at St. Mary’s Hospital, Knoxville,
Tennessee. The days inched by. The little girl got worse. The pediatrician
had to tell the parents there is very little hope. Be prepared for the
worst. Karen
and her husband contacted a local cemetery about a burial plot.
They had fixed up a special room in their house for their new baby but now
they found themselves having to plan for a funeral. Michael, however, kept
begging his parents to let him see his sister. I want to sing to her, he
kept saying. Week two in intensive care looked as if a funeral would come
before the week was over.
Michael kept nagging about singing to his sister, but kids are never allowed
in Intensive Care. Karen decided to take Michael whether they liked it
or not.
If he didn’t see his sister right then, he may never see her alive. She
dressed him in an oversized scrub suit and marched him into ICU. I looked
like a walking laundry basket.
The head nurse recognized him as a child and bellowed, “Get that kid out of
here now. No children are allowed.” The mother rose up strong in
Karen, and
the usually mild-mannered lady glared steel-eyed right into the head
nurse’s face, her lips a firm line. “He is not leaving until he sings to
his sister” she
stated. Then Karen towed Michael to his sister’s bedside.
He gazed at the tiny infant losing the battle to live. After a moment, he
began to sing. In the pure-hearted voice of a 3-year-old, Michael
sang: “You are my sunshine, my only sunshine, you make me happy when skies
are gray.” Instantly the baby girl seemed to respond. The pulse rate began
to calm down and
become steady. “Keep on singing, Michael,” encouraged Karen with tears in
her eyes. “You never know, dear, how much I love you, please don’t take my
sunshine away.” As Michael sang to his sister, the baby’s ragged, strained
breathing became as smooth as a kitten’s purr. “Keep on singing,
sweetheart.” “The other night, dear, as I lay sleeping, I dreamed I held
you in my arms”. Michael’s little sister began to relax as rest, healing
rest, seemed to sweep over her.
“Keep on singing, Michael.” Tears had now conquered the face of the bossy
head nurse. Karen glowed. “You are my sunshine, my only sunshine. Please
don’t take
my sunshine away…”
The next day…the very next day…the little girl was well enough to go
home. Woman’s Day Magazine called it The Miracle of a Brother’s Song. The
medical staff just called it a miracle. Karen called it a miracle of God’s