I think of my friends that are heading home for the holidays from school. Several of them are excited, and at least one is dreading the situation. For me, it means a week where I don’t have to pay for gas.
Let me tell you a bit about my family’s Thanksgiving tradition. It used to be that we would gather together with all of my other relatives in my grandparents’ home, arrive to a huge meal compiled mainly by my Memere Desrosiers, with contributions by my Memere Frigon, my Auntie Nicki, and even my Uncle Eric. We would bring different dishes, and all come together to have a meal. As people’s families grew larger and some relatives even moved away, the Thanksgiving meal simply ceased to exist. We now had children’s football games to attend, and our own schedules to keep. This beautiful tradition we had spent years cultivating just vanished before I had the chance to be truly thankful for it.
Perhaps, as a child, I was kept out of the real reasoning our family stopped meeting. Maybe there was some huge dramatic event that occurred to separate us. Either way, the family get-together that I cherished just stopped.
My mother tried making meals at home, but they never had the feel that accompanies seeing loved ones that are no longer in your life. Once the football games really started, we didn’t even have the time to make a full Thanksgiving dinner, and ended up travelling to a buffet. Sometimes my grandparents would join us, but usually it was just my immediate family walking along the aisles of food, stuffing our bellies for 10 dollars a person.
Trust me, I prefer this to no Thanksgiving at all, but while some people are dreading going home for the week, or excited to finally see their loved ones after all this time, my feelings about the situation are overall lukewarm. There will be no “I haven’t seen you in so long, how’ve you been?” It will be “Hey, remember, rent is due on the 28th.” I won’t be experiencing anything different than I’ve experienced this whole semester, except being able to sit and stare at the TV instead of the road.
The effect of vacations such as these is diminished to some extent. What are we going back to? The same thing many of us go back to after each day ends. I guess, among other things, this is one of the moments we miss out on: missing our families, and having the time away from them that really makes us thankful for what we have.
I know this is not true for everyone, but with my own story, this is how it is.
Hannah Desrosiers is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.