St. John's Hospital

Hello, and welcome back!

This week my assignment was to shadow a professional in something other than music therapy. Immediately I knew I wanted to shadow a child life specialist. I chose that profession specifically because I knew so little about it, and I was soon about to get a full experience.

During my shadowing experience, I watched this child life specialist walk children through procedures, provide comfort and distraction throughout the procedure, and implement a regular reward system afterwards which usually is an item that has been donated like a stuffed animal or a toy. The things these children endure are difficult and painful for most adults, so extra care should be in place to allow these children to excel throughout hospitalization and beyond.

The child life specialist mentioned one word particularly often, and that was normalization. Normalization for these children is essential and is addressed in many different facets through the eyes of a child life specialist and also as a music therapist. As music therapists we provide opportunities for expression, coping with hospitalization, pain management, and more.

What was so impactful for me this week was realizing how intertwined child life and music therapy are as professions. When we as music therapists can connect with other professions, collaborate, and work together as a team, we only build a stronger treatment for our clients and patients in turn.

Thanks for reading!