Friday, November 16, 2007

Conference is only half-way over!
I am exhausted! I have been here for three days and still have two to go! I am not used to sitting still for so long. I am enjoying the socialization, the discussion, the debate, and the drama (to a point), but am ready to wear my jeans and a sweatshirt rather than the professional dress that is expected (by me only, but still...).
I finished one of my presentations today. The next one is tomorrow afternoon, and then I AM FINISHED! I can kinda relax after that presentation. This is a very profession oriented conference for me, meaning that I am focused on things that are good for the Association and for the profession rather than for clinical use. There seems to be lots of interest in what I am interested in, so I hope that there will be some folks in the audience. I also hope that I can see this through the entire process and finish my dissertation!
I can! I will! I have to!
So, that will be my new mantra. I will add it to my repertoire and repeat it to myself every time I do not want to complete my tasks! I can! I will! I have to!
I can! I will! I have to!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Going to Kentucky, I'm going to the fair, to see a senorita, with flowers in her hair...
I am in Kentucky on the Indiana border, in the great town of Louisville! I have never been to Kentucky before, and I am hoping to see it in the sunshine before I leave. It has been very dark and gloomy for the time I've been here. I hope the sun will shine soon.
Anyway, I am here for the American Music Therapy Association (AMTA) National Conference. We always choose an exotic location and then descend upon it like locusts for a weekend. A glut of music therapists is an interesting phenomenon for any city block. The singing, serenades, research presentations, and sessions start today as 1200+ MTs arrive from all over the world. My life in the professional world is rapidly becoming that of mentor (as a long-time friend of mine pointed out yesterday, much to my surprise!!). I always feel inadequate when I see what things are happening with the profession. I have to remind myself that I am also doing important work for the profession. This is always reinforced when I am leading sessions that are packed full of therapists who crave information about things to do with kids! I am not anticipating the same response this year as my presentations are less clinical and are more training oriented, but I might be surprised. That is a great thing about conference. Sometimes things happen that are unexpected!
The week has been busy so far. I serve on a national committee, and we had a marathon meeting on Wednesday. The committee is in the second year of a leadership transition, and we are all familiar with the process now. The meeting was extremely productive, down to making concise decisions, and making plans for the improvement of our purpose in the Association. It was wonderful!
Today is full of meetings, classes, and networking. I have to get all professional in my dress and demeanor. It makes a nice change from jeans and a t-shirt, but I really do prefer my jeans over panty hose any day! Off to get gussied up and meet and greet!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Time to go to Louisville!
I am packed, the dishes are clean, and the laundry is finished. It is time to go on my annual sojourn to places far distant to commune with others of my type - yes, it is time for conference! I am ready. All I have to do is pack my backpack and then get myself to the airport.
The cat is not excited about her stay at the kitty hotel, but she'll be fine. My clients are not excited about my absence, but they won't even miss me. One of my interns is staying and will run music therapy while we are gone. The people who will miss me the most are the staff members who have to run their sessions. They are always appreciative when I am gone!!
I am ready to be professional and cordial. We will see how long that lasts, but at the moment, I am ready!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Conference Bound...
...and ready to go, I think! I always get excited and nervous about conference. I am excited to go present, see friends, learn new things about music therapy, and generally escape from things at home, but I am nervous about the same things at the exact same time. I often feel at the end of conference that I am not living up to my potential as a therapist - challenged by what others are accomplishing, and evaluating my own life by their achievements. Then, I look around at the audience in the presentations that I give, and I realize that others evaluate themselves based on me. What a humbling concept. Can't wait to see Christine and Lalah and Larisa again, and am even looking forward to seeing Lillie. Angie will be there, too! This will be a fun week, if I can ever get through the next three days! Bella will be a bit disappointed to be left behind, but she'll enjoy the kitty jail, I mean, spa!
I hope to get some new ideas for applications and some professional opinions about my work with the AMTA competencies - so, I'd better get hopping!