I walked into Good Counsel as a sophomore transfer student. It’s never easy being the new kid, but being new to a much larger all-girls school after spending ten years in small co-ed schools? It’s both terrifying and a culture shock.
I got lost on my way to almost every class, and had none in common with the other girls I knew attending the school. It wasn’t easy. Yet, even on my first day, someone helped me with my locker, and I sat at a full lunch table. I was never the cool kid, and at GCA, that was ok.
There are certain things particular to a girl’s school. You could ask for tylenol and eleven different girls would offer you some. A refreshing amount of people didn’t bother with makeup. There was no tip-toeing around the word “period,” and there was a sense of sisterhood.
Just as there are certain things particular to a girl’s school, there were amazing things specific to GCA. Nowhere else would you see girls running with brooms in blistery cold weather while a man who somehow wore sandals in the cold yelled that they were all “muggles.” Nowhere else would you see someone dress as the founders of the school for spirit week’s Throwback Thursday. Nowhere else would you hear the almost terrifying voice of Connie the Cougar over the loudspeaker. Nowhere else would you see so many students pitch in for a surprise baby shower for a teacher. Nowhere else would you see Sr. Ellen, the nun in the box, as she greeted you in the morning. Nowhere else would you see girls fighting so hard to keep their beloved school open on their stunning campus. Nowhere else would you see a huge number of girls and teachers reuniting for a field day one year after school had closed.
Now, almost exactly two years after Good Counsel has closed its doors, I remain best friends with girls I met there. Some have drifted, and that’s ok, to be expected. But the sisterhood I feel to the girls at Good Counsel remains, as does my love for the faculty that fought with us. Once a cougar, always a cougar.