I am so delighted to share one of my former student’s journey to becoming a child life specialist. I have been so inspired by her strength and you will too.
Guest Blogger, Allie Jones, Child Life Cooperative
What an honor it is to be a guest blogger for the Child Life Mommy!
I have had a couple of different encounters with Shani throughout the years, and I have been so encouraged by her support of the Child Life Cooperative. So today I am excited to share with you more of how the Child Life Cooperative came to be.
It was June of 2017. I had just become a mom to the sweetest little boy and was sitting on my couch while he was napping and was googling “child life stories” and “child life podcasts”. Though I could not be happier to be a first-time mom, I found myself also missing the stimulation of the child life profession while I was on maternity leave.
I craved the stories I shared with my child life co-workers. I loved the times when they would come back from an intervention and I would sit next to them, wide eyed hearing about their intense child life interventions they provided. I loved asking the questions, “then what did you do?” and taking mental notes as I learned from their skills and expertise.
I treasured the moments when I would come to the office, our safe haven, and sit at our conference table and begin to cry about a bereavement case. I valued the times when I would come fuming back from procedure, put my bag down and say, “Well, that didn’t go as I expected!” What followed was deep, meaningful clinical reflection. I crave it. We need it. We thrive off it in order to continue to grow and develop in our skills.
So, what if I could create a space that would promote reflection? What if I wrote a blog that would address the very real, raw and vulnerable parts of child life—the insecurities, the conflicts, the simple joys and rewarding moments. What if I spent time “sitting at the feet” of other professionals, recorded their stories from the field, and aired it on a podcast? What if I pressed in to my passion for learning and sought to develop resources that would support and empower developing child life students—the future specialists and leaders in our field?
After many, many hours and late evenings of dreaming and brainstorming with my husband, a gifted Career Coach, at our dining room table, the mission of the Child Life Cooperative was born: to learn by reflection, unite for support and equip students to advance the child life profession.
I invite you to be a part of the Child Life Cooperative! Whether you are a student, child life professional, educator or maybe even a parent or professional from an entirely different field, I hope that you can be encouraged by the real and honest stories you will hear from the podcast, read on the blog, and view ways to support students in pursuing their professional dreams.
I also invite you to contribute and collaborate with me. I would love to talk with you more to learn about how I can support and encourage you in your professional journey or hear any feedback or advice you may have of ways to expand and develop the Child Life Cooperative.