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A Humorous Look at the Bright Side of Cancer... and There Is One

June 13th, 2013

Getting Back In The Saddle

Photo by Abel Gage

Living life to the fullest? In my last post, I went on and on about all the things that I like to do and it’s true: I have been happy with my writing career, my retail nursery, my piano-teaching. But, there’s one little thing that I have avoided like the plague ever since I was diagnosed with Stage III breast cancer: playing the organ.

I used to play. Used to be pretty good at it, too.

I was never really taught how to play the organ. The church where I attended as a teenager had a nice, older couple donate a little Baldwin, so I jumped right in and hacked around a bit until I got the hang of it.

That was it: I was hooked. I played for church, I played for weddings, I played for fun.

Then came chemotherapy. I stopped playing the organ cold turkey.

A week ago, I found out that Sarah–one of the interim worship leaders at Bethany Covenant–was leading the Praise Band for the last time. I begged Randall, the worship and arts pastor, to put me in the band somewhere. He already had Heidi playing the piano. I couldn’t exactly shove her off the bench. “I’ll play the synthesizer, Randall, as fill. If that doesn’t work, I’ll sing ‘Ooo-la-la’ in the background. What do you think?”

He emailed me back right away. “How about doing it on the organ? I can set some synth type sounds for you on it, and we can push the console over by the piano so you can be part of the band. Let me know what you think.”

What do I think? I think a big, fat gulp. I can’t do that anymore. My feet… neuropathy from chemotherapy… I’m uncoordinated… I can’t get back on that thing… I’ve had nightmares about falling off the bench…

I emailed him back, “I’d love to.”

I’m happy to report that I played on Sunday morning with the band. And I didn’t fall off the bench once. I even managed to sing and play the pedals all at the same time. Go me.




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7 thoughts on “Getting Back In The Saddle

  1. You rocked that thing, Marie. It was great to have you as part of our record-setting band. (As far as I know, it was the largest 2nd service worship band in recent memory, perhaps ever.)

  2. Thanks, Abel. You weren’t so bad yourself on that bass guitar. And the mandolin… that was cool. It was great having all of those people up there. Maybe Randall will let me do that again. :)


  3. In the words of FDR “Only Thing We Have to Fear Is Fear Itself”
    You Rock! Glad to hear you are still playing Marie!!

  4. Ryan!

    I miss your playing and singing. You’re sure now that you don’t want to move back here?

    How is Laura? And the kids?

    Great to hear from you. And yes, I will keep playing.


  5. I am so impressed you played the organ! Sorry I wasn’t there to HEAR it, but still impressed no less!


  6. Bon,

    Thanks. I actually miss it. Not enough hours in the day to do everything we want to do, eh?
    Hope you’re enjoying your summer.


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Marie de Haan

Marie de Haan


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