Nurses care for others during some of the most difficult times of a patient’s life, but one at Cleveland Clinic Medina Hospital went the extra mile to give a patient a special farewell.
Annamarie Berg cared for patient Irene Rosipajla for at least 20 days in the hospital, she said.
“She didn’t really talk a lot [while at the hospital]. It wasn’t anything personal, but, you know, [Rosipajla] just didn’t feel good,” said Berg.
But Berg said she was able to breakthrough to Rosipajla with a song.
“One night, when I was leaving for a shift change, I said ‘Goodnight, Irene.’ Then, I looked at her and asked if she knew the song ‘Goodnight, Irene,’ and I sang a couple of bars from the song, and she looked at me and smiled,” said Berg. “From somebody who doesn’t really like to talk [to the nurses], that meant a lot and I knew that I had connected with her.”
As Rosipajla’s health deteriorated, it was decided that she be moved from hospital care to hospice.
“So the last time that Irene was in my care, I wanted to do something kind for her and for her family, so I brought my guitar,” said Berg, who minored in music in college. “I sang ‘Goodnight, Irene,’ and it was a very special kind of moment. … I was nervous to sing in front of somebody, but once I started playing and started singing to her, she was so focused and listening and her family was moved.”
Rosipajla’s daughter-in-law Michelle Naypauer, who said she treated Rosipajla as a mother, was in the room and brought to tears.
“Irene was a wonderful person who took me in as a daughter,” said Naypauer. “In the last couple of months, Irene was in and out of the hospital and we got to know Annamarie well.”
“[Before the song], Annamarie had done other great things. Our middle son Eric got married in August … [Annamarie] helped set up a FaceTime for Mom to be at reception bridal table, and it was beautiful,” said Naypauer.
Naypauer, who recorded Berg singing to Rosipajla, said she wanted to capture the heartwarming moment to send to family.
“There were so many tears and it was just so beautiful,” said Naypauer.
The performance was a heartwarming goodbye to Rosipajla. She died a few weeks later at home with family, said Naypauer.
Berg attended Rosipajla’s memorial, which Naypauer said meant a lot to the family.
Although overwhelmed by the attention, Berg said she is happy to inspire others but was ultimately proud of being able to make someone feel comfortable.
“I was able to use music to connect with Irene emotionally and establish that kind of rapport,” said Berg. “It was just another way to be able to convey to her that I cared for her.”
Nurse sings to patient moving to hospice care in touching moment originally appeared on goodmorningamerica.co