Once the stress of finals week is over, it is important to reward yourself with a break. Here at Hanover College, I was rewarded with a (practically) month long vacation away from tests, homework assignments and classes.
Not only did I not have any academic obligations, I was able to spend the entire month with my lovely family and friends back in my hometown of Evansville, Ind.
This all sounds fantastic (and let me assure you, it was), but there are still some worrying thoughts that will be going through your mind as you embark and return from your first Christmas Break as a freshman in college.
The first important idea is that it can be hard to transition from your home life to your school life and back and forth again. When living away from home at college, it can often be difficult to visit with your family.
Because of this, the friends you make in college became a sort of extended family. They are the people you will look to for advice (after calling home to ask Mom, of course.) They can become your support group, and you will learn to love spending practically every minute with them.
When leaving for home for an extended period of time like Christmas Break, you might become worried that you will lose the relationships with your friends that you have worked so hard to build. The answer to fixing this is simple: keep in touch.
You don’t have to call them to talk every day, but just sending them a simple “How are you?” or “Merry Christmas!” text shows that you care just as much about them from three hours away as you do when you are in the same room. However, no matter what, when you return to school after Christmas Break you will find that your relationships with your friends have remained the same, despite all your worries.
Instead, the hardest part of the extended vacation is that you might believe that since you have completed a whole semester of college away from your family already, that you are free from feeling the sad wrath of homesickness. This isn’t so.
I was shocked to find that spending an entire month with my family did not satisfy my desire to see them. After returning to campus and watching my parents drive away, I was hit with a huge wave of homesickness, and it wasn’t just me. It felt like the entire campus had a dark, gloomy cloud hanging over it.
While the homesickness will never truly disappear, there are ways to fight it. Always remember that your friends and family from back home are only a phone call away. Calling them to talk about your problems or just to hear their voices does not make you any less of an independent person; it just means that you love them.
Another way to beat this gloomy period is by surrounding yourself with your friends from school. Find that one person that always knows exactly what to say to you when you are feeling down. It may not be easy to find them in the first place, but if you look hard enough you might even find more than one.
My person here at Hanover is my roommate. She always knows exactly what to tell me to lift my spirits and college would not be the same, exciting place without her.
It might seem like a lot to take in, but an important part of going away to college is keeping yourself busy. This will not only make the time before your next break fly by, but it will also help you create happy, exciting memories to last a life time.