It’s my junior year in college and unlike most college students my age, I have never taken longer than a week off for Christmas break. Usually, during that time, I get roped into working shifts that nobody else wants while most other students go home.
This year was different in that I was able to go home for the entirety of break, and boy, will I never do that again.
For the first week, I was able to catch up with family, see some friends and eat at the local restaurants I had missed so much. After that, I got really good at taking baths and walking around in the woods. After two weeks, it really went south.
One of the strangest things is going out to the local bars and seeing the people you went to high school with. Even weirder? Going to the local bar and seeing an old teacher. But the weirdest thing is getting hit on by said teacher at the bar.
It’s also so hard to see people you know in the grocery store and act interested. Is that what adulthood is? Saying things like, “you look really good” and “let’s hang out while you’re in town and catch up.” All of which are meaningless conversations that won’t amount to anything.
While I am thankful that I have a dad that will support me for a month and let me live in his spare room, I did not plan on getting lectured. He gave me chores and rules and at one point I thought I would be grounded. I was also asked to take care of the chickens, which I am truly afraid of.
It felt like I was back in high school. I did as I was asked even though I just wanted to be a couch potato. Parents are tricky, man. It’s hard to move back in to a parent’s house, even for a small amount of time after living on your own for three years.
Growing away from parents is also something I confronted. I am still my father’s daughter, just one that curses more and has different priorities. He noticed that I had changed and had a hard time understanding that.
My trip home did bring me to some realizations. I am so very happy I got out of my hometown and am pursuing a college degree. Some of my high school friends were not so lucky. Working at the local bar and seeing the same people every day would suck.
Living at home again made me happy to not live at home anymore. The freedom of living alone and doing my dishes as I please is very gratifying. I am the only one who assigns me chores now, so take that, dad.
Distance makes the heart grow fonder. My relationships with all of my family members are stronger because of distance. I am much closer to them because we are not around each other enough to get on each other’s nerves.
So I’m thankful for the time I spent at home, but I am ecstatic to be back at school.