The following is a poem that was written by the father of one of our Alumni students following our recent Annual Alumni Event. We are so touched by his words and thoughts and grateful that he was willing to share them with us and allow us to share them with others.
The Girls of Alpine Academy
They arrive in such Pain, the Girls of Alpine Academy. Hurting inside, hurting outside. And each one has a story to tell. Each one has their own tale of how the pain became so great.
They arrive so Angry, the Girls of Alpine Academy. Angry at their parents (“How could you leave me here?”) Angry at themselves, angry at the world. Each one has their own reasons for being so angry.
They arrive so Afraid, the Girls of Alpine Academy; Afraid of the people and the place, afraid of each other. Afraid of the future and of the past. And each one has their own reasons for being so afraid.
And they arrive so Hopeless, the Girls of Alpine Academy. Hopeless because nothing else has ever worked, there is no light at the end of tunnel, and why bother anyway?
But they are also Strong, the girls of Alpine Academy. How else could they have survived so much? And each one has their own type of strength, and their own way of showing it. (Some ways of showing strength are not so pretty.)
And they are Resilient, the girls of Alpine Academy. They hide behind their fears and anger and hopelessness, but with time, (and help) the camouflage begins to fade, and they allow themselves to be seen for who they really are.
And they are Brave, the Girls of Alpine Academy. How else could they face their fears? How else could they talk about their anger and hopelessness? How else could they learn to laugh again? You have to be brave to allow yourself to be happy!
And they learn to be Forgiving, the Girls of Alpine Academy. They learn to forgive their parents (mostly.) They learn to let go of anger, and fear and hopelessness. They learn to forgive themselves, and they learn that forgiveness leads to love—of self and of others.
They are not perfect, the Girls of Alpine Academy. And they learn that no one expects them to be. They learn to accept their own imperfections and those of others. And they learn that, in the imperfections, there is beauty.
And they are all Beautiful, the Girls of Alpine Academy. Even in those moments of greatest fear and doubt and anger, they are beautiful because they are surrounded by love, and light. You can’t always see it in the mirror, but even in their darkest hours, the Girls of Alpine Academy reflect the light.