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Saturday, December 31, 2011

a year unlike any other...

Oh what a year it has been!  I'm a lucky girl, as I am constantly reminded.  In order to reflect on this wonderful year I've decided to make a top ten list.  This list compiles not only the best moments of the year, but rather the defining moments.

Playing the trombone, going to the opera for the first time, Hamlet (Jenn and I had a pet hamster), being nominated for a Grammy, a new car, and running MTSO all were important but missed the cut...sorry.

10. Going to my first NFL Game.  And in turn, winning my Fantasy League. I mean, I know these things aren't related but I had to take the opportunity to brag.  In all seriousness, the Colts losing while I was living in Indiana was awesome.  I had the chance to see two games at Lucas Oil and though I have nothing to compare it to, I think it has to be the coolest NFL stadium. Plus, it is the host of the Super Bowl this that's pretty cool.

9. Traveling.  I traveled more this year than any other (or at least it sure feels that way).  Chicago, Saratoga, West Laf, Atlanta and Indy were all a first but I had the pleasure of traveling back to New Hampshire, the shore, Ithaca, NYC, PA, and everywhere in between.  Man, flying is so cool....even if I complained about Newark Airport every time I was there.

8. Visiting the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Yup, this pretty much confirmed my desire to be a rockstar. Standing next to Michael Jacksons Thriller jacket OUTSIDE of glass was just a little overwhelming and I may have had difficulty breathing.  All I know is that I'm holding tight to my first guitar before one of you suckers sells it for millions once I'm famous.

7.  Road trippin' across the country with my sister.  Anyone who has experienced us on a daily basis knows this seems dangerous, however, the magic of a road trip took over and it was AWESOME. "Buckle up, next thousand miles!"

6. Having my parents visit me at my apartment. Sure, they came to visit when I lived in Montclair but it's way different when they fly to visit you. If you ever want to feel like a grown up...get yourself a studio apartment 13 hours away and ask your parents to visit. (Mom, thanks for cooking that Buffalo Chicken Dip and Dad, for making me try that new restaurant I was too nervous to try)

5. My Senior Recital.  Hands down the best night of my year. And most likely my life. So lucky to have such wonderful friends... And so it goes....

4.  Ringing in the new year in Times Square.  This has been a dream of mine since I was....well old enough to go to the city alone.  I was so blessed to be in the greatest city in the world, at the biggest celebration with wonderful people in BEAUTIFUL Dec/Jan weather.  It was so incredible and something that everyone should do once in their isn't as crowded as you would imagine and you don't have to wear a diaper.

3. Fake Graduating/ friends actually graduating. May was definitely a great month for me. Being part of so much celebrating (cinco de mayo included...the neighborhood children are STILL scarred from our kickball game) and so much accomplishment.  Watching my best friend graduate from Lehigh in the most beautiful setting, fake dressing up for formal with my Ithaca babies, my successful last night at Alexus with my #trepz and other loves. I'm so lucky to be surrounded by so many smart, pretty people. Thanks for making me look great, guys.

2.  Movin to Indianapolis. Packing my bags and moving to a new city?  Yeah, that takes the cake as a defining moment of my year...oh and also a defining moment of my life.  What a great experience. (more on that in my last post...ya know, the one where I cried in a Walgreens).

1. Finishing my degree.  It's been a long 4 (plus 6 months) years and I'm finally done.  Sure I don't have my board certification yet, and I can't wear a cap and gown until May but I am a degree recipient and that is something I'm certainly proud of.  Take that college, I kicked your butt.

Ahhh, I am so thankful for this year and all of the NEW people in it as well as the oldies but goodies. Sure there were probably an equal amount of things I'd like to forget but hey, I'm gonna go right ahead and forget them and so should you. Let's count our blessings and get ready for a new start.

sk xx

Friday, December 9, 2011

i just cried in a walgreens. lesson number 8.

Yes, I cried in Walgreens. And no, I'm not ashamed.

I know it's been a while, a long while in fact, but the truth is I've just been learning too many lessons to keep up.  In the past four weeks I've flown to Atlanta, reunited with KATE and the rest of the MSU professors, sat behind Ben Folds at our National Conference, learned so much and was so inspired to keep doing this wonderful job from INCREDIBLE music therapists, flew back to Indy, celebrated Thanksgiving in West Laf with an Ashley Farms turkey, turned 23 in Chicago with wonderful wonderful people, saw Buddy Guy perform LIVE and so close to my face, went back to Indy, worked my butt off on a final presentation (a job proposal for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital), had amazing patients to work with, celebrated the end of my internship and got to meet baby Emerson (SO SWEET), celebrated again, and again, and again....packed and packed and packed, and now here I am in the business center of my apartment because I have no more internet since I'm leaving for NJ in 12 hours.

So why did I cry in a Walgreens? 

Well you see, July 4th took a toll on my camera if you all remember.  It went in the river when we went canoeing, worked for a few days, before finally giving up. So I've been camera-less and for anyone who knows me, you know how I love my photog skills.  I've been using a lovely 35 mm camera throughout my journey and today something was not right.  The film wouldn't advance or rewind.  So I opened it up (very scared) to find that it had disconnected from the container.  I took it to Walgreens and they determined that the film had broken in half and possibly only 12 pictures could be developed.

Well, zero were.

And so I cried.

You see, I've had a lovely little life here in Indianapolis and those pictures are what I have to remember it by. Or so I thought.  I realized after I a Walgreens...that it isn't about the pictures.  Yes, there were pictures of a thanksgiving turkey, and of the beautiful Christmas decorations downtown, and of my birthday breakfast made by the lovely Nina and of beautiful baby Emerson and of me at my desk on my last day in the office (oh no, about to cry again)....but those are all things that are saved on my heart as well. They are moment in time that will be a part of me forever, even if they don't exist on a piece of paper and I can't remember the exact details like what I was wearing (although, maybe it'll be a good thing when I'm so unfashionable years from now).

The biggest things that I want to remember are things I didn't have pictures of at all.  It is moments like sitting in the office sharing cafe au lait with my supervisors and trying not to cry thinking about leaving this wonderful home.  (Yup, crying) It's moments in a session where an incredible patient of mine wouldn't let go of a hug on my last day.  It's sitting around a table on my birthday with new friends and old friends on Skype and feeling just so incredibly loved.  My heart is heavy to think about leaving it all tomorrow, but I'm SO lucky to have lived this life.

I am so honored to have been a part of the team at Riley, a staff of 25ish? incredible women with huge hearts and so much to offer. A year ago (almost exactly to the day) I had no clue what I was getting myself into when I accepted the internship, but I had a feeling it would be something great. That feeling was beyond accurate.  Not only have I grown as a music therapist but as a person, in so many ways and I'm just so thankful to have had this opportunity.

So what is the overall lesson that I learned here in Indiana?

trust yourself....
the payoff is huge.  find a supportive team, they are around you in the least expected places.  take risks.  say what you need to say when you need to say it.   give everything you can, in whatever way you can, and the return will be the best reward of all.

So here I am....1,067 hours later.  About to spend my last night in this incredible city. 

You've been a really hoot, Indiana. I'm not quite sure I'm done with the midwest yet.....I think you'll see me again.