Whew… An entire month almost flew by. I’d swear it had only been a week since I posted, but the calendar says differently :).
So, what have I been up to? October has been filled with some great child life connection and new opportunities for my private practice. October 4, I participated in the Child Life Think Tank- a group of child life specialists from around Texas that share ideas and resources for student programming. I always learn so much from the specialists that attend and I’m amazed at the time, energy, and talent that programs put into crafting child life student experiences. It was a shift in perspective for me to sit at the table as a child life instructor rather than a practicum student supervisor– a reminder of all of the change I’ve experienced in the past year.
I attended a networking dinner for as part of the Texas Children’s Child Life Conference. It was an all-around fun evening- a pre-dinner drink with a new child life friend, a great presentation on therapeutic humor, and meeting and connecting with child life specialists in all stages of the journey. Working on my own has its perks, but it can also feel isolated and constantly-new. This networking session and conference helped me feel grounded and connected to other child life professionals. The theme was “Be Inspired”- and it definitely helped me with a booster shot of child life creativity.
I made a goal for this conference of expanding my child life circle and meeting new CCLS. While I LOVE working with people, I can be a bit of an introvert. I prefer small social situations to big ones, and seek out the comfort of 1:1 or small group communication, preferably with people I already know. I’ve definitely had to step outside my comfort zone lately in learning to market myself. I created little favor bags with a pinwheel craft and information about my practice that I gave out to people I met at the conference. They were well-received and it was a fun way to start up a conversation. While I am still learning and building my confidence, I felt like I met my goal and made some new professional connections.
On the practice front, things are slowly starting to come to fruition. I’m going to have a table at a local health fair, I’m partnering with another professional to offer a new sibling preparation class, and I’m teaching a series of group infant massage classes in the spring. I still have a ways to go in growing and developing this work, but I’m feeling hopeful.
If you are interested in the simple pinwheel craft I created for the conference bags, there is a full tutorial on the practice website: Paper Pinwheels