My trumpet playing tenure is lesser in both duration and accomplishment to many of the players on this forum, but I do enjoy it, and there have been so many times that playing the trumpet has just made my life better. I picked a memory or two from that time that stands out, and invite you to do the same.
Several years ago, my uncle was diagnosed with cancer, and the downhill slope was a quick and slippery one. Within a few months he was under 24/7 care in home and the family was just kind of sitting around watching him slip away before their eyes.
We dropped by one afternoon to check in on him and the family. At that point he was mostly unconscious, and even when conscious, his responses were limited to a hand squeeze or to briefly flutter his eyes. We tried to talk and interact with him for a while, but he was completely unresponsive, and my aunt said he'd been that way for 48 hours with only a few signs of consciousness.
We'd been there for over an hour, and my aunt asked if I'd brought my trumpet. I happened to have it in the car, and she suggested playing a few of his favorite hymns to see if it garnered a response.
I played 3 or 4 of his favorite hymns, and my aunt had tears of joy as he fluttered his eyes, squeezed her hand, and kept trying to smile. He was hearing the music, it made him happy, and he was giving all available effort to let us know. Pretty well got all of us choked up. It was an amazing and humbling experience, and I was grateful that my trumpet could bring joy to my uncle and the family in his waning hours. He died later that week.
In re-reading that, it seems sad, but it really wasn't. The tears shed were happy ones.
Regardless, here's another and happier memory that happened a few years prior to that when my second son was about 2 or so. He was quite ambulatory, but wasn't really talking much. I was practicing the ole horn one morning before work, when I heard a small voice crooning monotonously, "woooo-wooooo." I looked down to see my son with a plastic toy trumpet someone had given him, trying to emulate my long tones. It was pretty cute, hilarious and awesome all at once. My wife got a quick photo of it, and it's one of my favorites. Maybe I'll hand that photo to him one day when he's playing trumpet in college or something.
I'm no musical savant, but I'm not a complete hack, either, and I can say that playing trumpet has made my life better a million times over. There's a bit of my trumpet story, what's yours?