I am around a month and a half into my internship at Music Therapy Connections. During this time, I have had my fair share of ups and downs. I am discovering the challenges and anxieties of transitioning from being in school to being in the professional setting. Along with these challenges, I have had many moments that have brought so much joy. This week I’m going to outline some of the challenges I have faced, but also the joys too.
I knew that going from a student to an intern would come with its growing pains. I am finding out how much of a transition it is to go from focusing on a few clients per week to multiple clients per day. There is more music to learn in a week, additionally I am learning a wider variety of music. As each client has different needs and goals, learning how to transition from client to client can be challenging.
Now that I’m an intern I no longer receive regular grades like when I was a student. Not worrying about grades sounds nice at first. However, I never realized how much validation I got from getting grades. Grades were a clear way for me to measure my progress. Without them, I am left to myself to determine how successful I am. This can be difficult, as I have found myself often to be my worst critic.
While I’ve found the transition to working with multiple clients to be a bit of a challenge at times I absolutely love getting to work with all of them. I enjoy talking with all of the clients about their days and exciting parts of their lives. I’ve gotten to celebrate with clients as they succeed. It brings me joy to make music with them and see the change music can bring. A favorite intervention I have done with a client so far was a rewrite of Good 4 U by Olivia Rodrigo about the client’s goals. Working with clients is the bright spot of my day.
Additionally I’m finding joy in some of the small, odd and ends things. The small progressions I have been able to see in myself since I started. I enjoy doing the singable stories during Listen and Learn and seeing the children’s reactions to them. Watching my supervisor’s excitement about the progress of a client. I have had so much fun planning and implementing sing along events at St. John’s Children’s Hospital. This past week we did a spooky songwriting event at St. John’s Children’s Hospital!
I have found it easy to let the mistakes and challenges take over my mind. This in turn has caused a lot of anxiety and stress. I see myself becoming more self conscious in some areas, but I am also feeling more confident in other areas. I am working to focus on the good over the mistakes. I’m discovering that no day is perfect, but there’s good spots to each one. I’m finding progress isn’t always linear. There are times I feel like when I take one step forward, I go three steps back. I’ll keep making my way slowly forward, and at the end of this experience I know I’ll be a better musician and therapist than I was before.
There are some growing pains right now, but I look forward to the exciting things and the different lessons I’ll learn and experience!