Peaceful Warrior

Day in and day out, our Kids Rock Cancer music therapists are seeing children, teens and young adults faced with the challenges of cancer and blood disorders. People often ask them, “How do you handle that? Isn’t it that so sad? How do you not cry all the time seeing sick children?”

Tracie’s response is the same for everyone. “It isn’t always easy and it is absolutely emotional. But more importantly, we get to bring a creative, positive outlet into the room. When there is so much darkness, a KRC experience can bring back a little bit of light for the participants and families.”

Of course, honestly, and naturally, it can take toll on a therapist. Research studies have shown the effects of “compassion fatigue” typically seen in healthcare professionals who provide direct care. How do our therapists cope? One example involves actual music therapy for the music therapist! While training Cara to join the team, Tracie expressed some of the feelings every therapist should be aware of. In the process, Tracie and Cara decided to put those feelings into music.

The product of this “unexpected” music therapy session is a song called “Peaceful Warrior,” telling of these unique session experiences from the therapist’s point of view. This song takes on a different perspective from the idea of having to “fight, fight, fight” until you beat cancer. “These patients are all fighting,” Tracie says, “but it is in their own way that strength perseveres. This song gives them permission to feel good, bad, sad, scared, etc. Just because you are a fighter doesn’t mean your feelings are right or wrong. It’s most important that participants truly understand that all of their emotions are to be acknowledged and processed with open arms.”

The team performed Peaceful Warrior at the end of its American Music Therapy Association conference presentation earlier this spring. Watch and listen

 

Peaceful Warrior

Written by KRC Music Therapists – Tracie Sandheinrich and Cara Stern Sudbrock
Guitar by KRC Music Therapist – Jaime K. Wilhite

 

You can be sad

You can be mad

It’s okay to be tired

You don’t have to hide

I wanna hear your voice

Can I see you smile

Even if it hurts just for a little while

 

You’re a peaceful warrior

Courage doesn’t have to roar

It sings in silence

You’re stronger than before

Cause you’re a peaceful warrior

Strength might be hard to see

Your journey is your own

So break through with melody

Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah – break free

Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah – break free

It’s a peaceful warrior I see

 

Step by step

One day at a time

Your potential’s shining through

You’re a star on the rise

Bravery is your shield

Holding steady through the battle

And underneath the armor

You continue to inspire

 

You’re a peaceful warrior

Courage doesn’t have to roar

It sings in silence

You’re stronger than before

Cause you’re a peaceful warrior

Strength might be hard to see

Your journey is your own

So break through with melody

Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah – break free

Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah – break free

It’s a peaceful warrior I see

 

You’re not fighting alone

Yes we all stand beside you

Don’t carry this load

We will carry the weight…with you

 

You’re a peaceful warrior

Courage doesn’t have to roar

It sings in silence

You’re stronger than before

Cause you’re a peaceful warrior

Strength might be hard to see

Your journey is your own

So break through with melody

Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah – break free

Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah – break free

It’s a peaceful warrior I see

 

Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah – break free

Nah nah nah nah nah nah nah – break free

It’s a peaceful warrior I see