Wow! The first day of Family Weekend is a tremendous whirlwind of activity. Launched by a family introductory meeting at the Farmhouse School, the day is then set in motion with reunifications, smiles, laughs and yes, tears. All of the emotions you could imagine after not seeing your child for 10 weeks. After that, the families head off for a day of family therapies, experientials and some quiet time together.
The Level III, and Level IV residents enjoy a much deserved and looked forward to trip off campus beginning in the mid-afternoon. All Level III’s get to stay off campus on Saturday night. A Level III with their second family weekend get to stay off campus Sunday night as well. Level IV’s will enjoy a complete 3 night family weekend with a return on Monday. Level II residents, while enjoying a great day with family are not allowed off campus for the overnight.
This always leaves the question as to what happens to the Resident’s with whom familiars are not able to participate in Family Weekend. Rest assured that our staff plan a good mix of activities, exercise and time to converse with peers and staff. Today gave them an opportunity to step up their effort of support by taking on all of the campus barn chores and spending lots of time with the Ironwood equine team. Some students spend extra time in school while others take the opportunity to Mentor residents at Frye and participate and Family Therapy group sessions. These students are paired with a staff who are excited to create adventures and unique opportunities to challenge and reward the residents not participating in the Family Weekend experiences.
While we are all making the most of these special moments here on campus, there are several family members not able to attend these weekends. This dynamic is a powerful reminder to be appreciative and purposeful with the time we do have with the people we care about.