Surge Spring 2017


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Surge Teen Magazine

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SURGE MAGAZINETAHRTE &ZOLNITEE’SRATREYEN Spring 2017 Kravis Children’s Hospital at Mount Sinai


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SURGE The Zone’s Teen Art & Literary Magazine of Kravis Children’s Hospital at Mount Sinai Spring 2017 Volume 7 Issue 1 contents 2 Guest Teen Editor’s Note / Editor-in-Chief’s Note 3 Before My Scoliosis by Kavaughn 4 Explosion of Color by Ana Blanchard 5 Cookies by Bella Marie / Art by Bella Marie 7 I am a Strong Girl by Esmerelda Reyes 8 Photography by Carly Menker 9 A Silly Brother Who Doesn’t Believe by Karen 11 My Brother Chamar by Diavion 12 Photography by Annie Braun 13 Teen Q&A with Music Therapist Kristy Waldron 15 Ecuador, el país más hermoso by Emily Guamán 16 Photography by Stina Trollbäck 17 Writopia Lab Writer’s Corner 19 A Flower’s Dream by Megan Meyerson 20 Art by Nora Brusinski 21 Capturing the Moment by Haemaru Chung 22 Art by Stina Trollbäck 23 Hospital by Oliver Hoyt 24 Art by Ana Blanchard 25 Emotions of The Week by Diavion / Art by Diavion 27 Art and Writing by Marian Cepeda 29 Photography and Writing by Carly Menker 31 Apple Pie by Leelu Ravi 32 Art by Anonymous 33 Simply Speaking by Abraham Weitzman 37 To All People by Thalya Onelien SURGE STAFF Molly Haas-Hooven Editor-in-Chief Diane Rode Rebecca Wallace-Segall Co-Executive Editors Russell Mindich Founding Editor Jaclyn Damiano Lauren Smith Sarah Yazdian Art Editors Thalya Onelien Guest Teen Editor Elsa Bermudez Abby Coleman Scott Krier Writopia Lab Design & Production Team Thanks to Russell Mindich and family, and to the staff of the Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy Department of The Mount Sinai Kravis Children’s Hospital. To view this issue online visit: The Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy Department 1 Gustave L. Levy Place Box 1153 New York , NY 10029 212-241-8024 1 | SURGE Cover photography by Carly Menker, age 17 Writopia Lab 155 W 81st Street Suite A New York, NY 10024 212-222-4088


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Dear Readers, NOTETEFERNOMEDTIHTOERGUEST Welcome to the spring edition of Surge magazine. Surge is a magazine that creates a sense of community between all adolescents (or younger kids) who are dealing with an illness.This outlet helps us express feelings that most people won’t understand. As you go through this magazine you’ll see artwork or read bodies of work that you will understand so deeply you’ll feel a connection with the artist or writer. I related to so many things in the last issue, that I didn’t feel alone. Sometimes we as students go through internal struggles that our parents don’t quite understand even though they want to help. We can feel alone at school because no one quite understands us either. Surge can really help with this feeling. There is something for everyone in here. On the rare occasion that you don’t find that thing you can connect with, maybe it’s waiting for you to make it. Reading, writing, or drawing something that feels personal to you can apply some much needed comfort when you feel alone. Who knows, you might even read something funny, because we have to remember to enjoy ourselves as well. Thaly a ’s writ in g is f ea ture d o n p age 37 ! -Thalya Onelien, age 15 Guest Teen Editor Dear Readers, Welcome to the third collaborative publication between the Child Life and Creative Arts Therapy Department at Mount Sinai Kravis Children’s Hospital and Writopia Lab, a nonprofit creative writing program for kids and teens. In your hands you hold the reflections, fears, and dreams of teen artists and writers.Whether they have been patients or students, or both, each teen in this magazine shares the desire to create and express themselves. As you read through these pages, you may find comfort, or a laugh, a moment of empathy or deeper understanding. How does creative expression give you a voice? How does it help you connect to yourself and others? Interested in contributing to the next issue? We would love to hear your voice and see your art! Send any writing to If you are interested in creating art, email Enjoy! Molly Haas-Hooven Editor-In-Chief SURGE | 2


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Before my scoliosis, I was very healthy and confident in myself. But as time went on my curvature has gotten worse and my doctors made me go get surgery. While in the hospital it is important to stay calm when you’re in pain. Also, your family will always be by your side. Just know that everyone is here to support and help you through these times. -Kavaughn, age 15 3 | SURGE


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“Explosion of Color” Art by Ana Blanchard, age 20 SURGE | 4


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COOKIES Written and Illustrated by Bella Marie, age 11 There was a queen named Isabella. She was a lovely queen who was nice but still strict. One day it was her cousin’s birthday so she baked her favorite treat, cookies. She made some cookies decorated with a castle on them and the others with buildings, but what she didn’t realize was that she was going to go on a journey of a lifetime. Everybody was used to castles so they decided to let the queen and her cousin, Anthony take the first bite. As they took a bite they were transported.They were transported to the one and only, New York City!!!! They had no idea how they were going to get back.They decided to walk around. It was a very big city with lots of music and lights.They were going to have a walk. During their walk they wondered who and where the owner of New York City was. They bumped into a boy named Mike.They asked him who and where the owner was. “Hey wazzz up?” “Do you know where the King or Queen or both live?” “Queens and Kings? We ain’t living in the dark ages. Nowadays we just have a President, named Barack Obama. He lives in the White House at Washington DC.” “How do we get there?” asked Anthony. “There’s a train you could take,” said Mike. By the way they were looking at each other, Mike could tell they didn’t know what trains were. “I’ll call you a cab,” said Mike. In no time they were standing in front of the White House. 5 | SURGE


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With a trustworthy and caring heart, not to mention an empty schedule, Barack Obama let them in. They told him about their day and he came up with an idea. “You didn’t take a bite out of your castle cookies, did you?” “Of course, the buildings being on the icing took you to NYC. The castle must take you to our kingdom!” The queen invited Barack Obama on the trip with them. Instead of being proud of what she used to see, she was disappointed in what she was seeing now. People were drinking even if they were underage. They were betting over their use of $150 and nobody was taking a stand. Barack Obama could tell she was disappointed. So he made her a deal that would be hard to make.“How about you become the President and I will be the King?” The Queen knew her kingdom needed her, so with the sound of confidence she said, “I will keep being the Queen and help strengthen my kingdom.” The Queen kept ruling her kingdom singlehandedly and well. Until, she went back to NYC and met someone who changed her mind… SURGE | 6


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I feel proud of myself because I am a strong girl. I pass a lot of situations in my life, especially in the hospital. I have a kidney transplant. And I feel great because I’m going to do what I want, Because I have more possibilities now. I have a big family and I like to be with them and do different stuff. We go out, we play around with my nieces, and eat together around the table like a family. I want to graduate from high school and go to college and start nursing. I want to go to new countries. -Esmerelda Reyes, age 18 7 | SURGE


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Photography by Carly Menker, age 17 SURGE | 8


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A Silly Brother Who Doesn’t Believe Written by Karen, age 11 It was almost about to be Christmas and Lydia and her brother were in the living room. Her brother asked her what she wanted. She said,“A pool to swim in the summer with friends and family.” “Really?” he said.“That’s all you want? You don’t want a game like you always wanted, like an Xbox GTA?” “Well yea, but that’s kind of boring just sitting on the couch. In the summer you could ride a bike, but I don’t want to go where other pools are. I want to just be in our backyard with our family and friends hanging out.” Their parents were listening in a corner behind the wall. The next day it was Christmas. Everybody woke up. Lydia and her brother got up and went downstairs to check the presents. 9 | SURGE Art by Artists of the Zone


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It was snowing outside. She was playing in the snow with her brother. Then she wanted to go to the backyard. She opened the door and… There was a pool (with no water)! “Justin!” (That’s her brother.) “Justin! Come and look!” Her brother said,“Are you kidding me? A pool? Really? Did Santa do this?” The parents came out and said,“Yea, sure! Of course he did!” Six months later, it was summer. Lydia called her friends and everyone was hanging out in the pool, drinking juice and eating pizza. The brother said,“I don’t know how Santa did it, but that guy has some muscle to get this pool prepared quick for Christmas and for the other kids in the world.” Lydia said,“Uh sure, muscles…” The End SURGE | 10


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My Brother… CHAMAR Chamar is my brother. He’s two, hilarious, and very funny. Chamar thinks he’s so funny, always in my room, jumping on my bed, crawling onto my pillows and clutching them. He likes to run around. Sometimes he goes into my room and takes a stuffed animal off my bed and calls it,“A-FiFi.” He’s always laughing or saying, “A-DORA, A-DOROTHY, A-DORA, A-DOROTHY!” Chamar is very advanced, he’s aware of everything. He finally found out how to get out of his crib. He loves drawing and he’s really strong, but loves to correct people, making them feel like they’re wrong. Chamar loves spiders, he loves to sing the songs, “A-SPIDAH, A-SPIDAH!” It’s not funny, Never ever, But you laugh at his laughter because it’s so cute until he says he’s hungry, “Here we go again with him,” “I ungy! Foo Foo, Foo Foo! 11 | SURGE


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He loves our mom, but I call her Ma. He calls her,“Mommy! A-Moo-Moo! A-Da-Da!” He’s not sensitive, he doesn’t care. He’ll love you the same, he’s very much aware. He lays on my chest so he can hear the sound, The sound of my heartbeat, Go pound, go pound. -Diavion, age 14 Photography by Annie Braun, age 13 SSUURRGGEE || 1122


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Teen Q&A Spotlight on Music Therapy Teens from Writopia Lab and Mount Sinai have lots of questions about music therapy! Kristy Waldron, MA, MT-BC, LCAT-LP, who practices music therapy in the Pediatric Emergency Department at Mount Sinai Kravis Children’s Hospital sat down with Surge editors this spring to answer the teens’ questions. What is music therapy? The American Music Therapy Association defines music therapy officially as the clinical and evidenced-based use of music interventions to accomplish individualized goals within a therapeutic relationship by a credentialed professional. Music therapists work in lots of different places – hospitals, community centers, schools, retirement homes (and many more!) with the primary goal of using music and the special relationship that is created between the therapist and the individual to promote emotional health and wellness. What is your job at Mount Sinai? Here at Mount Sinai Kravis Children’s Hospital, I specialize in Pediatric Emergency Care where I help people cope with the challenging experience of coming to the hospital suddenly and sometimes unexpectedly. My goals in the ED are to decrease pain and anxiety while increasing relaxation and sense of safety. I also work with the Child Life Specialists to provide procedural support. I work with patients and families to discover what music interventions meet their needs – whether it is rock, rap, electronic, or country, the most important part is whether it is meaningful to the patient. What has been your most memorable/favorite moment at your job? There is just no way I can choose a single moment, but I can say the best moments are when I am fully engaged with a patient, witnessing how the music we are involved in together helps that patient cope with a significant and difficult moment of life. Or, when I see a patient and their family member connect with each other in a brand new way through the music. I am continually humbled by the impact music therapy makes upon patients and their families in a variety of circumstances. 13 | SURGE


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Do you find that specific types of music are more effective than others? We all have different emotional reactions to various types of music, based upon our personal life experiences and how we are involved in the music. Music therapy can include vocal or instrumental improvisation, active music listening, music assisted relaxation, playing and singing familiar songs, songwriting, drumming, etc. Simply put, the music that is most effective is whatever music works best for the patient! What is your favorite type of music or instrument? I started formal training as a vocalist at the age of 9, but I also have a special affinity for playing the guitar. My favorite composers are Debussy,Tchaikovsky, and Gershwin. I love listening to music from the 1930’s & 40’s from the Great American songbook and Jazz standards, and Classic Rock from the 1960’s & 70’s.When I make music just for myself, I love to sing Broadway show tunes and play cover songs from the singer/songwriter & folk genre on guitar.The great part is that there’s always more to discover and my patients introduce me to new music all of the time! What motivates you in your work? I am motivated by my belief in music’s power to help, transform, and heal. I have experienced it in my personal life and I see it happen on a daily basis as a music therapist. Newly out of graduate school, I am also motivated to continue honing my therapeutic skills through supervision and continued education to better serve my patients, their families and the medical staff. SURGE | 14



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