Friday, April 30, 2010

An Open Letter to My Beautiful Students

Today I saw your souls - raw and aching - as you found out about the shooting last night of the 12 year old brother of one of your own. I saw you surround him and grieve with him, pray with him and cry with him, and I was once again thankful that you have allowed me to be a part of your amazing community.

This week was Multicultural Week, a celebration of our uniqueness and the strengths we have together. You put together an incredible show, 22 acts that amaze and astound those of us who watch you. I watched you patiently teach the freshmen how to do the intricate dances, enthusiastically applaud even the performers you didn't know, and defuse potential tension with kind words instead of harsh ones. I saw you blossom as you realized that you can do things that others are in awe of and that your differences are indeed special.

And then, when you found out what had happened, it was your suggestion to change the focus of tonight's show to a benefit performance, you wrote and rehearsed a new song to start the show, you organized a candle-light vigil, and you made it all happen in one day.

I don't know why this happened, and I don't know how to make you feel better, but I wanted to let you know how much I hurt for you, and how much I wish you didn't have to deal with these things. I would tell you that it will get less painful eventually, but I know you aren't ready to hear that, and unfortunately, while the pain will lessen, it will never entirely go away. You will never be as innocent as you were yesterday and my heart breaks for you. I am amazed by your resiliency and I would help you carry this burden if I could.

Miss Dark Side

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