Freshman year winter break. The first time I had the dichotomy of my homesicknesses for home being replaced with homesickness for school.
Eighteen years of continuous living in my rural hometown fissured when I took the typical path in life by going away for college. And as I was the embodiment of the “most unique superlative” my high school classmates bequeathed me senior year, my path in college was not so typical. My new friends, who didn’t get along with their families, failed to understand my desire to return home on weekends. Much of my time as an undergraduate I looked forward to my “escapes” from academics by returning to the comforts of home, especially during long holiday breaks after finishing dreaded finals. However, over the years this separation between my co-existing worlds at home and at school was split further by my extended visits to NYC and England, which increasingly opened my eyes to worlds beyond rural PA.
Having just returned to work after my holiday break, I can at least say that some things never change. More specifically my mother leaves certain chores, like emptying the litter box, just for me. And instead of being angry at me for forgetting to pick him up, my brother now vocalizes his frustrations whenever I try to workout in the living room. As my trip to Ireland took up the majority of this break, there was literally no time for me to be bored at my parents’ home. This, however, also meant I had less time to spend with my family, more precious now that I live on the other end of the state.
Maybe you just can’t go home again, even on break.
And while Binghamton was much closer in terms of milage to my hometown than it was to the home my Long Island friends left, it was worlds away from where and how I grew up. Personally, I couldn’t be happier that I chose to go to a college so far removed from my comfort zone. Without taking that chance then I wouldn’t be in a city I currently enjoy and working at a job that I surprisingly miss when I’m on break.