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Jackie Schuld Art Therapy Blog

A Letter to Change

Dear Change,

I’m glad we’re on better terms these days.

You’ve always been in my life, but we haven’t always gotten along. Like when my mother got cancer and died.

Yeah, harsh example I know. But who would like that kind of change?

What I didn’t know then was that even difficult change can usher in unexpected good. My mom dying led me to a period of deep grief. I expressed that grief through illustrations that I turned into my book “Grief is a Mess.” I think that book is the best creation of my life. That would not have happened without the change of my mother dying.

Autistic art therapist Jackie Schuld shares a before and after photo of an abstract painting.
Illustrating change: A before and after photo of an acrylic painting I made

Now, please don’t go killing other family members.

And certainly don’t tell me in the moment that some horrible change will be for my good. I’m mature, but not that mature.

I do have more trust in you now though. I also like that I cannot see your actions coming. I used to try to control you. To say, “THIS is the kind of change I want” and hold on with an iron grip. Many times, the unanticipated change is the best.

For example, when I went to graduate school for mental health, my plan was to run art therapy groups. I NEVER could have predicted I would own a private practice and solely see adult clients individually. That was not a change I could have even imagined.

So you often bring me far better than what I can dream. Thank you for that.

I’m glad we’ve grown closer because you and I are going to be seeing a lot of each other this year. So many things are changing. At first, I tried to have it all figured out. Now, I have a rough plan and trust the other things will fall into place as they should.

I trust this will all be good change.

I bet you get tired of us humans judging you as either “good” or “bad” though. As I mentioned earlier, even what we perceive as “bad” can lead to good.

This trust has made me a better therapist too. Many times clients come to me with no hope that things will change or get better. I can hold all of the hope for them. I know things will inevitably change and I can continue to work with them until they experience that.

So thank you for all you do, not just for me, but for all the people in this world. I appreciate your efforts.

I hope you get some rest though, you certainly seem quite busy. Maybe next time you come to visit we can take a nap together. Wouldn’t that be nice?

We’ll see if you can tolerate that kind of change. Haha.

See you soon,



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