Monday, June 27, 2011

The Morning of the First Day!!!

It is the morning before I start my real job and I have over an hour before I leave (45 minutes earlier than I need to) so I thought this would be a good time to get out my last thoughts as a non-working art therapist.

I had a dream this morning that I haven't quite figured out yet, but it's definitely related. I was doing therapy for the first time with a thin dark-haired adolescent boy. He was pretty resistant, either said nothing or that everything was great, like I think it typically goes with adolescents who don't trust their therapists yet. Because it was a dream, part of my job was to walk him home, and of course, he lived in the neighborhood where I also grew up. In fact, he lived at the end of my street. So, we're out of the therapeutic space and we're walking and he tells me he has something he needs to talk about right when we're almost to his house. I know I am supposed to have good boundaries and only see him for an hour, but I ask him if he wants some extra time to talk about it. I'm flattered that this kid seems about to open up, curious about what he has to say and concerned that if I let the moment pass he will clam up again the net time I see him. I ask him if he wants to take some time to talk right then, but he says, "No, next time." He gives me a flower that looks like this one that I just stole from the internet...

and he says "I lied about one of these things." When I take the flower, it has words written on the inside of the petals. I recognize it as something he made with his last therapist (who I know was male, I don't know why that would be relevant, but I'm adding it anyway). Each petal has a single word written in black and the kid pulls out the petal that says, "happy," before he goes back into his home. I know this kid is telling me he isn't the everything-is-great-show he has been putting on and I feel sad for him. I go back to some other old artwork the last therapist left. It is a drawing of his life in black and red marker, but everything is positive sounding and generic. I still don't know him.

This leaves me a few minutes to state my hopes and fears about my new job. My hope is that I love my new patients/clients/residents/kids (I don't know what to call them yet) and am excited about everyday I get to spend with them. I hope I am always motivated to help them and willing to do my homework to learn everything I can to help them come to terms with their lives. I hope the people I work with are friendly and supportive. I hope they're willing to be open to the first art therapist on staff at this facility and offer guidance without squishing me so early in the game. I fear politics and getting used, because I'm eager. Most of all, I'm afraid I won't like my patients/clients/residents/kids and will dread driving into work everyday.

In the meantime, check out what I made this weekend! Not only do these monkeys have faces (painted... a new sock monkey technique for me), but they also have lucky bellies and wings.