Would Aim still be your tribe...

If 100% of parents voted for "the other guy"? What about 90%?

If 100% of parents thought that adding to the parent contract was a horrible idea? "What is this? Nazi Germany?? I thought Aim was about freedom?!? H-y-p-o-c-r-i-t-e-s!!!"

If 100% of parents thought that we needed to add 27 new items to the contract? "And a lie detector test, monthly background checks, weekly random drug AND caffeine tests, and heck...while we're at it--uniforms!"

If you missed the parent meeting this morning....well....you missed a doozie. I guess I figured we'd go out with a bang for the last one of the school year. I would encourage you to get with a fellow traveler who can fill you in on what you missed. I guess the trend a few of you have noticed with your kids--where you can all but guarantee that no matter what day they miss, it will inevitably turn out to be the biggest day of the year--applies to parents too?  "Every week, I'm supposed to take four hours and do a quality spot-check at the paper mill. And of course the one year I blow it off, this happens. Creed Bratton :) lol

Detour to a very serious note:

“The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek”

A few weeks ago we had a launch about the hero's journey. The eagles went and briefly researched hero's journey maps different from our giant poster hanging in the entryway to the school, before coming back as a group to share both common themes and unique differences from the examples they found. An incredible conversation all around...as the eagles understand and can actually describe how their experiences at Aim fit into various points along the map. It was pretty incredible to hear. The hero's journey helps us understand some deep truths that are hard to put into words. Many attempt to describe the various facets of life in terms that mostly belong in universities - psychological, sociological, biological, philosophical, anthropological, and of course political and economic terms just to name a few. However, those fall short in my opinion when it comes to some of the deeper phenomena we experience in this life. That's where something like the hero's journey can make all the difference. There are some truths contained in it that I believe all of us will experience sooner or later. And the one that I haven't been able to get off my mind lately is the concept of the 'abyss'.

This is something I reckon many of you already intuitively understand. And it is a game-changer.

It is different from the normal everyday bumps and bruises commonplace on the road of trials. It is where layer upon layer of 'suck' pile up without relenting. The rare occurrence where the planets align, if you will, and the cosmic forces conspire against you...to break you. While coming to the abyss is something I can confidently say occurs far more often at Aim than other schools, it still is fairly uncommon even here. Ms. Serena and I tried to think of all the times when eagles at Aim have experienced this since the inception of the school--and we couldn't even come up with ten eagles. Though don't feel too left out--I am sure your eagle will reach the abyss eventually.

The words the eagles used to describe the abyss in our launch were 'crisis' and 'hopeless'. Followed by 'transformation', 'change', 'finding yourself', and 'death and rebirth'. Perhaps you can see why this is no common trial. This is an extended, prolonged episode where everything is going wrong. At Aim, that might mean you hate the quest, are struggling with your team and house, stuck in Kahn, losing motivation, fighting off jealousy and pride, dealing with issues at home, losing eagle bucks, losing the house cup, losing sleep, losing friends, losing self-confidence, losing your courage, losing your determination, and your love of learning and your curiosity and your happiness, losing your spark for life... losing everything!

...or so it would seem.

How does anyone move against such darkness?

When you hear the guides say we are inspired by these young heroes, that is not hyperbole. When I watch these heroes peer down into their innermost cave, resist the urge to run away and retreat, and instead press on at times utterly alone, only to find out the cave is actually a network of caves that extends beyond their line of vision, and yet they move forward, I am inspired. And what's more, when I see parents resist the urge to snatch their children out of the grasp of this abyss, and instead acquiesce the broken heart that comes to all parents brave enough to enter their own cave and watch their children struggle, but hold on to hope and they do it nonetheless--that inspires me too.

Hope is a powerful thing. And sadly, it may be a dying thing in much of the world today. But I hope each of you can find the success that is most important to you. I hope each of you can find and fulfill your calling in life (if you haven't already) and claim the fulfillment that comes with it. I hope you can each be the type of parents that you long to be. I hope everything good and wonderful this world has to offer can be yours.

And I hope the same for your children. 

Hi, I'm Lance Stewart.

I'm the founder and Head of School at Aim Academy.

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