Why Music Therapy Is The Career For Me

Why Music Therapy Is The Career For Me

Music therapists are an underrated category of heroes in my book.
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Music therapy is becoming a more popular career path, but it is still much less common than most other majors. The majority of people I know didn't even know music therapy existed or what it was until I told them I was going into it. Music therapy is defined by the American Music Therapy Association as "the clinical and evidence-based use of music interventions to accomplish individualized goals within a therapeutic relationship by a credentialed professional who has completed an approved music therapy program." This definition is a little wordy, in my opinion, and when I said that to someone one time when they asked me what music therapy is, I think they lost interest. If you want to learn more about what music therapy is, please click the link and you will be directed to the American Music Therapy Association website where you can learn all about it. Instead of trying to explain what music therapy is, today I'd like to focus on why I'm majoring in music therapy. The answer seems obvious, doesn't it? I love music. But it goes much deeper than that. Of course, it's perfectly fine to be going into music therapy purely because you love music, but the majority of people in my major have deeper reasons as to why this is their career of choice. For me, it's several reasons. The first being, yes, I do love music. Most people have a "thing," like dancing, painting, or acting. For me, it's music. I'm a total nerd when it comes to music. I was in a local statewide choir outside of school for several years, and then I joined the band in the 5th grade as a flute player. In high school, I joined the choir and junior jazz band. I wanted to be in senior jazz with all of the really good players, so I switched to saxophone and from junior year on, I was in honors choir, symphonic band, and senior jazz band. Some people thought I was crazy, but I loved every second of it. My senior year, I barely left the music wing of the school. In college, I'm in three ensembles as well.
The second biggest reason I'm majoring in music therapy is my love for helping others. It sounds cheesy, I know. But it's so true. There is a certain joy I get from making someone else smile or making someone feel better and I can't think of a better way to spend my working life doing two things I love so much. Everyone in my major is caring, sensitive, and dedicated to bettering other people's lives. If you've ever felt a happiness that starts deep within that comes from doing something you love, then you know how we feel when we are able to help someone else by doing what we love. It's a win-win. Not only do we get to make music, but our music making is making a difference in someone else's life.

After those two reasons, we have slightly different other reasons as to why we chose this path. For most of us, something has happened in our lives that made us realize the importance of music therapy or that music therapy was definitely what we should be doing with our lives. Most of us have seen music play a positive role in someone's life close to us. After witnessing the effect music can have on people both in everyday life and in more serious situations, It's pretty hard to ignore. Once the fire was ignited for me, I couldn't put it out. I wanted to learn everything about it.

Some people ask about the emotional side of the job, and they do have a point. As many of you know, I'm an extremely emotional person, and I do have trouble hiding what I'm feeling. In fact, if you take a look at me at any given time, you can probably take a pretty accurate guess at what I'm feeling right then. It's a little embarrassing, but as I grow older, the less I care that you all know how I'm feeling without even having to ask. I am very nervous that I won't be able to keep my personal feelings in check, but I know I will learn with time, experience, and guidance from my peers and professors at school. And I do realize that I may not be able to help every client that comes my way and while that upsets me greatly, the feeling I know that will come with helping at least one person will make up for the one I couldn't help.

I cannot think of a better way to spend my life than doing what I love for others, and help them heal. Music therapy is clinical, but to me, it's also magical and beautiful. Music therapists are an underrated category of heroes in my book. I can't wait to be one of them.

Cover Image Credit: Pressenza

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To The Girl Who Still Has Her Mom This Christmas

To the girl with who is blessed enough to have her momma this Christmas. 
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     To the girl who is blessed enough to have her momma this Christmas, please remember to soak every last bit of it in. 

      Please remember to hug her so tight, that the way she smells is locked into your nose. Listen to all the stories you've heard a million times, like you've never heard a single one. Help her, even if it seems completely silly to you, help her mix that cake. Laugh, oh please laugh. Laugh at all her corky ways, at the way she mispronounces words, try's to be hip and use new found lingo, or how she cusses when she forgot to get the rolls out of the oven but quickly asks the Lord for forgiveness. Remember her laugh, etch it into your brain. Make her happy, if she wants to go riding around looking at Christmas lights down the same streets you've went for years, do it. Don't fuss, take her advice, agree to just disagree on things. It's not worth it. Most importantly, remind her over and over how much you love her. 

     Because unlike you, I'm not able to see my mom on Christmas. I'm not able to see her on birthdays, Thanksgiving, or any other occasion. My time with her is up. Death is the most permanent heartbreak. 

     How I long to hear her voice, her laugh. To feel her tight embrace. Smell, oh god, what I would give to just be able to smell her. I would absolutely love to go riding around for hours while she ohhs and ahhs at every single house we pass. If I had the opportunity I'd tell her just how much I love her, how I'm so thankful for all the sacrifices she made for me. In fact, I'm not sure I could ever tell her enough. 

      Some days I wake up and it still doesn't feel real. Others, I panic trying to remember exactly how she sounded. Because, I don't want to forget. I don't want to forget a single characteristic about her. Not one. 

     Take time, not just on holidays, or special occasions to be with your mom. Even if it's just you two piled up watching reruns of "The Little House on the Prairie", soak it in. 

    You only get one momma. Nobody could ever take her place. She's your rock. 

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25 Moments Of 'A Christmas Story' You Remember While Watching It 10 Times In A Row On Christmas

"You'll shoot your eye out, kid."

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Let's be real, you can't go through the holiday season without watching "A Christmas Story." It's a classic. I have to watch it at least once around Christmastime. Since it's iconic, it's very easy to remember everything that goes on throughout the film. Here are twenty five of the most memorable moments of the movie.

1. When poor Randy had to bundled up EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. 

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2. And in turn caused a huge problem. 

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3. Oh, and another problem. 

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4. When Ralphie dropped the F-Bomb in front of his father. He didn't say "fudge." 

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5. And he received the classic soap bar punishment. 

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6. When Swartz was persistent on getting what he wanted.

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7. When we realized Ralphie's father had never seen the word "fragile." 

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8. When Ralphie's mother was determined to keep her husband unhappy. 

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9. The one killjoy phrase quoted more than once. 

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10. When Ralphie got ripped off. 

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11. When Randy was picking at his food. 

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12. And his mother insisted on showing her how the piggies ate. 

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13. When the mall Santa got too close and personal. 

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14. Only to be a jerk in the end. 

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15. Let's not forget what Ralphie desperately wanted for Christmas. 

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16. When poor Flick was left to suffer on that pole. 

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17. When the family was forced to eat at a Chinese restaurant after their turkey was ruined. 

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18. And it was devoured by the neighbor's annoying hound dogs. 

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19. When Ralphie and his friends had to deal with this douchebag every time they left their houses. 

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20. It's okay, though. Ralphie eventually decides not to put up with it. 

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21. And let's not forget the pink nightmare Ralphie was given. 

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22. Ralphie's daydreams were interesting, too. 

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23. But some of them were weird. 

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24. When the Red Ryder BB gun ended up being a hazard after all. 

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25. Who am I kidding? The whole movie is memorable. 

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