Sunday, December 22, 2013

Surviving Christmas Break

So you've been away at school for over 4 months.
You are pumped to be done with finals and feeling on top of the world.
You return home for a month… What now?

This series of events never ceases to amaze me. And I've done it 4 times now. The Christmas break transition is the hardest (other than the first summer back.) You go off and live your life on your own time and schedule and friends and boom back in high school land. 

What do I do?
Why do I hate everyone here? 
Is it okay to drink around my parents?
Where did my room go?
Why does everyone keep asking if I'm dating someone?
Why can't they just leave me alone?
Why are they asking so many questions?
I'm an adult!

Those are real life college student struggles. 
And after four years of this, I think I may have found a few ways to maintain your sanity while home with the parents for a month. 

Always a solid go-to when trying to avoid anything… You know you've binged on a whole series to avoid studying for finals. Christmas break is the perfect (and appropriate) time to do this. It's also the perfect way to escape to your room for hours and claim to be busy without much questioning.
My suggestions: Gossip Girl (duh), Orange is the New Black (currently watching), Friday Night Lights, American Horror Story, Dawson's Creek, One Tree Hill, and any Christmas movie

Be patient
This sounds almost preachy, but I promise you it helps. I wish I could figure out how to be patient at all, honestly. It's a work in progress. But when you are back home living with parents again, the inquisitions can be the most frustrating thing ever. So when you mother starts asking where you are going, with who, when you will be home, and why you are doing that… Take a deep breath and try to answer without blowing up in her face.

Target. That is my place. "Oh, mom. I've got to go run some errands. I'll be back later." Disappears to Target for 3 hours… Target, the mall, your favorite boutiques, anywhere. Just escape sometimes. With a friend, by yourself, whatever you prefer. Getting out of the house while the parentals are frustrating you may be the best way to avoid a freak-out.
Oh, and locking yourself in your room and online shopping is also completely acceptable behavior.

Working out
This is consistently my get-away. If you want to punch something, go to the gym and punch something. Or go run. Or something. It's a perfect way to get out of the house for an hour or so and improve your mood. It's also the perfect way to avoid gaining that holiday weight.

This one is pretty obvious. Hit the liquor store, grab some wine, and have a glass for 4. It's amazing how much more relaxed you'll be.

Act like an adult
If you want to be treated like an adult when you return home, you need to act like one. Don't just expect your parents and family to respect you differently just because you've been away at school for a few months.
Have respect for your parents and their house. Don't be rude to them. Help out around the house a little bit. Don't be a diva. And if you feel like you are being treated like a child, address that… Like an adult. No tantrums and stomping to your room.

Don't want to deal with the day? Sleep. This is the perfect time to catch up on all the sleep you've been lacking since heading off to school. If your parents have a problem with this… You may just be out of luck. A girl's gotta get that beauty rest. You don't want to head back to campus looking more sleep-deprived than you did when you left. Take some time and justtttt relax.

Picking up a book may make your parents think you're becoming more astute and educated. What a concept. So pick up a good read and maybe they will leave you be.

How do you deal with the Christmas break transition?

xoxo, jgp

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