This last week at MTC was full of emotions whether that be anxiety, sadness, or pure joy. When last week began I was up to my neck in things to do, what with a midterm, multiple assignments, session planning, documentation, recording, and then of course trying to squeeze in time to see my family and enjoy a bit of the holiday season. I was beginning to feel short of breath because of the sheer amount of things to do.
Then on top everything else I had recently seen a patient I have cared for over quite some time become very ill. They were doing well and I think it was at the point that they said the magic word “discharge” that I felt relief and sadness roll over me. I was of course relieved that the patient was going home, but at the same time I had not yet faced the fact that we could have lost that patient. It was at that moment that I realized how bad it could have been. In my documentation later that night I wrote this:
I have recently realized that there is a way for most practicing music therapists to keep certain parts of their lives and emotions separate from their career, but that is next to impossible in the hospital setting. When you’re sitting at the bedside of a child in great pain, facing a new diagnosis that will change their life, or even a terminal diagnosis you have to be able to be open to be able to convey a sense of honesty, care, and sympathy as they move through their hospitalization. But I think that when we open ourselves up at that deep level we accept that we carry them with us. I feel that way about this one particular patient. I carry them with me.
Needless to say I had a lot going on, but I never for one moment felt alone. I am blessed to have a wonderful support system in my personal life, but also supervisors who support me in my endeavors through this dense learning process called internship. My support system is so important to me. I can honestly say that after such a crazy week I had three times the laughter that I had to tears or fear. I am so thankful to have them through this amazing experience.