The end of semester at college means heading home for the vacation. This can come as a welcome break from the pressures of academic life and the stress of being away from home, without the immediate support of your close family. However, the end of term does not always bring the relief you might expect, as you must adapt once again to life at home and relinquish some of the freedoms you have been enjoying at college. So what are the best things about the end of semester and coming home from college and what are the worst? Send My Bag explains all.
The best things about the end of semester
Things to look forward to when coming home from college
Getting to see your family
By the end of term you probably won’t have seen your family for a few months, especially if they haven’t been able to visit you at college. So it’s great to be able to go home and spend time catching up with your family. If you have had any trouble settling into college life, being back in the cocoon of people who know and love you will do you the world of good.
Being looked after
After months fending for yourself when it comes to cooking, cleaning, shopping and laundry, being home will feel like a real treat as your parents will probably go back to looking after you as much as they did before you left for college. Just make sure you don’t get too used to it as next semester will soon be on the horizon.
As well as having your parents look after you, being home also means you get to enjoy all the conveniences of the family home. You can finally watch your favorite shows on a proper TV rather than squinting at your laptop screen. You can buy big tubs of ice cream because you have access to an actual freezer compartment. And you can have friends round to sit on chairs and a sofa rather than all crowded on your single bed in halls. You also get a break from these irritating student problems.
Eating proper food
Finally, food that doesn’t look like a congealed mess! Enjoying your mum and dad’s home cooking will feel like a Michelin-star dining experience compared to what you have been able to produce in your dorm microwave.
Getting a break from academia
Studying for your degree can be a bit full on at times, especially at the end of semester when essays are due in or you have exams to sit. As term progresses your energy levels start to fade, which means it takes extra effort to get all your work completed by the end of term. Going home gives you a mental break from it all. Even if you have work to do over the vacation, you should be able to set down the books for at least a week at the start of the break.
The pressure is off for a bit
Not only is the pressure off you academically when you come home at the end of semester, you can also take a break from other situations that might cause you anxiety, such as struggling to fit in extra-curricular activities, or feeling the pressure to make friends and maintain an active social life. At home, none of that really matters, as you feel accepted for who you are.
Absence makes the heart grow fonder, which is something you will notice when you return home after being away at college. While you may have been desperate to move away for a change of scenery, the perspective this gives you makes you appreciate and look with fondness upon the place you grew up in.
Seeing old friends
It’s exciting seeing old friends after so long apart and trading stories about college life. You can use the opportunity to gain some trusted advice about anything that is bothering you at college.
Visiting your old high school
It’s a great boost in confidence to visit your old high school as a cool college student and to realize how far you have come since leaving high school.
The chance to do other things
The vacation is a chance to do something different, whether this is working a job to earn some cash, doing an internship or other work experience, engaging in charity work or going traveling. The vacation is an excellent opportunity to expand your resume.
The worst things about the end of semester
Things you wish you didn't have to deal with when coming home from college
Having to adjust
Going to college is always an adjustment as you leave the familiarity of your family home, but coming back home at the end of semester also requires getting used to. The schedule you have been following, of attending lectures and classes, producing essays, and pursuing a busy social life, is suddenly gone. You need to find things to fill your days while at home. But you also have to adjust to living in-step with the rest of your family.
Returning home means you suddenly lose a lot of the freedom you had at college to just do your own thing. Being under your parents’ roof again means that you will no doubt have to live by some of their rules again.
Still having college work to do
Although it’s the end of semester, next semester is always on the horizon. This means you probably have some sort of college work to do, whether it’s writing an essay, catching up on notes, or getting stuck into next term’s reading list. Knowing you should really be getting on with college work and the guilt that comes with not bothering can put a dampener on your vacation.
Pressure to enhance your resume
Even if you desperately need to rest during the vacation, there is always the nagging feeling that you should be doing something worthwhile that will boost your resume. This feeling is made worse if you know others from college are away doing internships or working for charities while you sit watching daytime TV.
Having to answer questions about college
You will likely have some very well-meaning friends and family who want to know all about your semester at college. This is fine, unless you have been having a difficult time of it and just want to forget about college for a while.
Realizing how much you have grown apart from your high school friends
Like you, your friends will have forged new friendships at college. You will also have spent a lot of time apart, whereas you used to share experiences together all the time. This means things will feel different between you, which might be difficult to accept. You may just stop seeing certain people from home, but this doesn’t always have to be the case. You can easily hold on to the friends that mean the most to you, as long as you are willing to accept that your friendship has taken on a new form.
Missing your college friends
If you have got along well with people at college, it may seem unfair to have to spend a few weeks away from them. Or, if you have started to date someone, weeks spent apart may quickly start to feel like forever.
After working hard to meet deadlines at the end of semester and having maintained a steady run of nights out, coming home and having a break can make you feel exhausted, to the extent that getting up to make a cup of coffee can feel like a big effort.
Having to go back to college
You have finally settled into life at home, only to have to pack up your things again and head back to college, giving up all you have enjoyed about being at home. This to-ing and fro-ing every term can get a rather tiresome, especially if you live across the country from your college. But at least you don’t have worry about getting your luggage from A to B – just pack everything in a suitcase or two and have Send My Bag deliver it to your dorm or home. This will make your journey a lot more manageable, if not enjoyable.
If the end of semester seems like an eternity ago and you are faced with packing for college once again, take a look at this college packing list to help speed up the process.