Richard's Daylight – by Judith McPhie

It was serendipity that led us to PLAN.  Asked by friends to speak with parents of a girl with a disability similar to our son’s, we went as helpers and received a gift — knowledge of an organization which is now providing our son with some happy and fulfilling hours.
My husband and I contacted PLAN and had an initial meeting with Lauri Thompson and our son.  Lauri asked him about his interests and when he mentioned music, she asked him what he wanted to do with his music, did he think about playing to entertain other people.  When she asked him that question I thought to myself, ‘It’d be great to see him working on his music again.’
Over the next year two PLAN network coordinators, Tina and Ariel, got to know him and came up with a plan which fit his gifts and interests.  Ariel is a gifted musician and began playing music with him every week.  Together they composed a winning tune that our son called “Daylight”.  They started talking about performing this song in a café nearby that supported local artists.  Ariel’s brother on mandolin, her husband on guitar, and myself on violin, began to practice with them.  It was an eye-opener for me to watch our son discuss the song with this wonderful group of people and make suggestions about how we could all play together.
One wintery night before Christmas, 2011, the group was ready to perform in public.  Our son took the initiative to register “his group” with the MC.  We were the 3rd act.  My husband said we sounded amazing and it was wonderful to watch our son sitting at his keyboard, surrounded by four musicians following him throughout the performance to get their cues and play their parts.  What a triumph!
Tonight, as I type this, Ariel and our son are having their weekly jam session and I hear there are two new songs in the works.

Thank you PLAN.