Sunday, June 28, 2009

Summer's Here

It was only this week in practically-Canada that the weather started to warm up above mid seventies, but now it finally feels like real, true summer. (Besides the storm we had this week involving hail.) I've been at my job for a few weeks, and things are in full summer swing.

I've been trying to put aside some money for the wedding. I mean I've been trying to for a while now, but I keep having to dip into the fund every now and then in emergencies. It feels like I've been taking two steps forward and one step back, which is better than it being the other way around I guess, but I still feel as though we're not any closer to getting married. I worry about it all the time, and it really takes the fun out of being engaged. (Though, how much fun is left when it's already been two years, and there is still no wedding in sight?) I want everything to be perfect, and not that a less expensive wedding would be any less special, but you only get to do it once, and if I were to have a simple wedding I would want it to be because we planned it that way- not because we're young and have no money. Really I think I'll prefer a simple wedding, because starting off a marriage in unnecessary debt is simply not appealing to me. I would rather put more money toward a house and less toward a wedding than the other way around. As it stands now though, we can't afford a ceremony, a reception, or an apartment to live in afterwards.

We have such a long way to go.

Speaking of the future, I've been looking into some graduate schools, just to start thinking about what kinds of options are open to me. My bachelor's degree will be in painting, which leaves me with few career paths after school. I could become a working artist, which I really have no interest in at all, or I could become a teacher, which I'm sure I would love... but what I'm really interested in is therapy. Art therapy has many different forms and uses, and I want to learn about them all. Last summer, my youngest brother, Josh, was diagnosed with Autism at barely two years old. Since then, I've learned a lot about Autism, and the various ways in which it's treated. So, my true interest would be in using what I'm learning about art to help people like my brother find their voice. I read somewhere that people with Autism think in images, and using art as a form of speech therapy can be incredibly successful. That's what I want to do.

All that to say I found a school that looks quite promising: Eastern Virginia Medical School. (Who knew a little old art student like me would apply to med school?!) Their art therapy program looks incredible. The classes seem useful and interesting, and you end up being able to sort of customize your own degree by choosing three internships you're interested in. If I was absolutely sure I wanted to work with people with Autism, I would try to have my three required internships involve something in that field. I still have a lot of research to do, but the future looks promising again. I have to admit, after two years in art school, I was beginning to feel incredibly depressed at the thought of spending the rest of my life around some of the types of people I've encountered. Not that they're bad people, but I've never understood the idea of only making art for yourself, with no other purpose than to increase your popularity or fame within a certain group... not that that's what all artists do, but the farther I can be from that world, the better. I want to feel like I'm making a difference. Like I'm using my talent to change other peoples' lives, not simply to better my own.

It's not a profound or original thought, but it's one that's very important to me. If I could spend the rest of my life giving hope and a voice to people who never thought either thing would be theirs, I will die happy.

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