For most people who leave home when going to college, family becomes something different. It’s hard to describe, because they’re the same people they were when you left, but you’re not seeing each other every morning in passing on the way to work or school anymore, or eating family meals together, and you’re not getting into little arguments over laundry or other chores anymore; you’re not together anymore. In some ways, this is beneficial to your relationships, because a lot of the aspects that drove you nuts about them are out of the picture. In other ways, it creates a deep longing for home, the support system that goes along with it, the memories, and the little things that happen on a daily basis with people you trust and can tell anything to.
In college you learn to rely on yourself instead of your mom, dad, or guardian of any sort. It isn’t easy at first, and just because it happens doesn’t mean you love your family any less. I miss mine all the time, but I know that this is the time for me to grow out of my home-sized shell and into a world-sized shell, one that prepares me for life on my own even outside of Hope’s campus.
All of this being said, when I get time with my family I try to make the most of it. My mom came up to Hope this weekend for Family Weekend. There was a lot going on, but we chose to stick to our own schedule for a majority of the time. On Friday we went to a parents lunch with my sorority, shopped downtown, ate at Mizu Sushi, did some more shopping at Target and Barnes and Noble, and then went back to the hotel. We ate snacks, watched TV, talked, and I got to read a bit of a new book I bought (for fun, not for classes!). In the morning we ate brunch, went to the Family Weekend worship service at Dimnent Chapel, and then got lunch together.
It was a really relaxing weekend, and I’m really glad my mom came, but the sadness of her leaving still hits me, even as a sophomore. I don’t think it’s anything to feel embarrassed about. When you love people, you miss them, and sometimes that feeling can hurt. Other times, it reminds you of why you miss them so much in the first place – because they’re important to you, and how lovely it is to have someone worth missing so much. Whenever I feel sad when missing my family, I try to miss them in a grateful way instead.
Thanks for reading!