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March 27, 2012

By Rob Jarrett, Admissions Director

Every call starts this way, but soon the details come out. It is mostly moms and dads who call, but sometimes its aunts, grandfathers, or friends of the family. They all have a sad story to share about a child that they care deeply about, but can’t seem to help.  Many families have lost hope and are calling out of desperation.

They haven’t seen what I’ve seen, though; I know there is plenty of hope. It comes along with a whole lot of work, but I know the chances are good that in the near future they are going to feel like a miracle has taken place.

I know that many parents I have already been through this conversation with are now saying things like, “We feel like we got our daughter back” or ” We can’t believe his transformation.” I’ve seen the student’s tearful reunions during the parent program and I have read their letters to their future selves. I’ve heard our Ohana students speak in their groups with so much emotional intelligence that an observer could easily mistake them for the therapist (as I did on my first visit).

I’ve received so many messages of gratitude that honestly, this miracle has become commonplace. It’s what I expect to happen. Some of the stories that I hear are truly heartbreaking. But in the face of these sad stories it is easy for me to remain supportive and hopeful, because I know all this. I also know that enrolling their children at Pacific Quest is not the answer by itself. They still have the work ahead of them, and it’s my job to prepare them for what is to come. Part of the work that we do involves struggle, and without the support of the family and the treatment team, the miracle won’t happen. But seeing these families rise to the occasion has become commonplace too. I know we can all work together to bring these students the awareness and the coping strategies that they need to succeed and find balance and happiness in their lives.

My part is played during the crisis, but it’s the end results, the success stories, that keep me going. I have no doubt that we are saving lives, and that is what makes it easy to find the time and energy it takes to really be there for them, whenever they call.

“Pacific Quest, this is Rob…”

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