Newness and Ambiguous Loss: Reflections of a Music Therapy Student Working with a Patient with Advanced Dementia
(2016) Newness and Ambiguous Loss: Reflections of a Music Therapy Student Working with a Patient with Advanced Dementia, no. 83.
This case study focuses on a music therapy student's perceptions and reflections on particular events in a clinical setting. The methodology adopted for the fulfilment of the research was the Open Systems and Retrospection using a Qualitative Approach. The participant was an advanced Dementia patient selected after a significant period of months of therapy interaction in a student placement setting. The current case study focuses on two major events reflecting on weaknesses and fears concerning memory recalls. A reflective journal was employed as an event record. This work constitutes the therapist's attempt to reflect on her innate feelings and responses to the experiences of ambiguity and newness perceived during therapy sessions with the participant. "Without awareness, there is no consciousness. But awareness is hard to see. It is ever-present, like the air we breathe" (Seeman 2009). In this study awareness is reached through self-reflection engaging the music therapy student with her insights in order to self-improve as a therapist by attaining a more mindful mind. Countertransference appeared to be a core element in verbal or musical interaction where information either about the therapist or the participant seemed to emerge.