How to deal: going home for Thanksgiving

“Do you have your entire life figured out yet?” and other difficult questions

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Thanksgiving is just around the corner. It calls for a Monday of no class, lots of home cooked food and the chance to reunite with some long distance friends.

While catching up with your cool aunt and destroying three servings of mashed potatoes, there may come some moments that make you long for the freedom you had back on campus, but here’s how to deal with them.   

The Turkey Dump.

This is for if you and your high school sweetheart are making it work long distance. You won’t get through it all unscathed, sorry. You can look forward to an awkward reunion with your significant other over Thanksgiving where one of you drops the bomb that university life is just SO much fun and oops, you moved on. The positive side to this is that it comes on a day when there’s plenty of comfort food and your childhood bedroom to wallow in.

The Dieting Family Member. Don’t let this one get you down. You know who I mean, that one family member who counts exactly how many servings you’ve had and keeps bringing up the ‘freshman 15’. Don’t worry, they probably says this to anyone willing to listen, and soon, you’ll return to your judgement-free home where you and your roommates can order pizza at 3 a.m.

Nagging. It can be difficult to go from your own man to the kid under your parents’ roof. Remember all those chores you did all summer? Yeah, don’t think your parents forgot! You may begin to wonder if they missed you or just missed the extra set of hands. Old habits die hard, they’re probably just so happy that you’re back home, they want everything to go back to normal! Cut them some slack, they’re going through child withdrawal.

Political Banter. Are you afraid of a lag in conversation during Thanksgiving dinner? Well, fear not! That uncomfortable silence will be filled with thoughts on Clinton and Trump, as if you haven’t heard enough of it. If someone’s glorifying Trump while everyone else shakes their head despairingly, all you can do is just sit back and enjoy the entertainment.

Seeing High School Friends. I don’t mean the ones you want to see. I mean the ones that you sort of pretend to be friends with when you have to, but wouldn’t actually choose to be friends with given the choice. As you suffer through brunch with your friend who never stops talking about how incredible their life is now that they’ve moved on to bigger and better things, remember, you also get to see those high school friends you miss like crazy. That makes it all worth it.

Questions About the ~Future~.  Did you think that going home for Thanksgiving meant not being plagued by anxiety about the future? Ha! Good one. Your entire family will just be dying to ask you about your time away. Not the fun stuff, think more along the lines of “What are you doing after your degree?” “Have you met your future spouse yet?” “Do you have a plan for the next thirty years?” It can be rough, but be thankful that you have so many caring family members who genuinely want the best for you. Your grandparents basically live through you, let them all have their fun! Be thankful you have the opportunity to create your future.

Despite the awkward moments, Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful for the happy things we have in our lives. Be thankful to have a family to nag you! Be thankful to have a lifestyle that permits a flexible future! Just remember, you get yummy food, your own bed, and your own shower. Happy Thanksgiving!

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