10 Struggles Of Winter In The Midwest

10 Struggles Of Winter In The Midwest

Will it snow tomorrow? Or will it be 60 degrees? No one knows.

Before college, I never gave much thought to the weather in different regions. However, once I made friends with people from different areas, I started realizing how weird the weather in the Midwest is. It seems like most people either live in an area where it’s cold for a solid half of the year, or in an area where it’s constantly 80 degrees and sunny. But then there’s the Midwest. The Midwest is weird. Here’s just a taste of some of the things we struggle with during the winter in the Midwest.

1. The weather is super weird.

For most people, winter means four months of cold. But in the Midwest, winter can last from October to the end of March, and sometimes it even continues into April. It might even snow on Halloween. It might be 55 degrees and sunny on Christmas. It might snow again in the middle of your spring break. You may wear sandals in February and be back in snow boots in March.

At least no one can say our winter weather is boring.

2. Snow days.

Some of my friends in college freak out if there's an inch of snow. They start talking about delays and cancelled classes. I just look at them and laugh, because us Midwesterners know that you don't have a hope of school being called off unless there's, at least, two to three feet of snow and drifting. But when your school's name flashes on the news under cancellations, it's the most glorious feeling in the world. I don't care how old you are, on a snow day, you can find everybody at the local sledding hill.

3. Lack of snow days.

Snow is pretty. Snow is fun. Unless it only snows happens on the weekend. We've all felt the disappointment of waking up to blizzard conditions -- on the weekend. What's the point of having that much snow if it doesn't end in a snow day? Weekend storms are the absolute worst. All of your weekend plans are effectively cancelled, ruining your social life. Especially when all of your friends live close enough to each other that they can still hang out. Don't worry though, the roads will be clear in time for school on Monday.

4. Potholes.

Not only does the weird winter weather in the Midwest wreak havoc on your weekly outfit choices, but it wreaks havoc on the roads, as well. You’d think the roads would be safe after all the ice finally melts, but no. Driving anywhere is like playing a giant game of dodge-the-pothole. The weird mix of hot and cold weather causes all the roads to crack, turning every season in the Midwest into construction season.

5. Cold days.

Cold days are not quite as fun as snow days. Essentially, school is cancelled because it's way too damn cold to go outside without getting frostbite in 10 seconds. They do, however, give you the perfect excuse to lay on the couch all day in a blanket.

6. Ice storms.

As if snow and below zero temperatures weren't bad enough, Mother Nature decided that we should be blessed with ice storms too. These usually result in fallen power lines, leaving us without power or heat. Which is super fun. Although it sucks to not have power in your house, it's awesome when ice storms cause you to get out of school early -- or to even have school cancelled entirely.

7. You fall. A lot.

Just leaving your house is risky in the winter, because there's ice coating every inch of the ground. Walking in packs is extra dangerous because if one person goes down, you all go down. Going inside isn't much safer either. The snow from everyone's shoes on the floors makes the floors almost slipperier than the ice outside

8. You're always late.

You wake up on time, shower, eat breakfast, and head outside... only to discover that it snowed two feet overnight. And everything froze. On your car. In the winter, you can never expect anyone in the Midwest to be on time. Between shoveling your driveway, scraping off your car, and attempting to navigate the icy roads, it's nearly impossible to be punctual.

9. Instantly sweating when you go indoors.

Leaving your house in the winter requires, at least, three layers of clothing to keep you warm outside. The problem with that is that whenever you come indoors, you’re instantly drenched in sweat because the temperature change is so drastic. It becomes a race to see how fast you can get off your coat, scarf, sweater, and whatever other layers you piled on before you sweat through all of them. The real question is, how fast can you get them back on when you have to go back outside again?

10. Extra school days in the summer.

Getting out of school for snow days is the best -- until you remember that you have to make them up in the summer. It doesn’t seem like it’d be a big deal when you’re pelting your friends with snowballs on your day off. But then it’s the middle of June, and you’re stuck inside while the rest of your friends are lounging by the pool.

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To The Boy Who Will Love Me Next

If you can't understand these few things, leave before things get too involved

To the boy that will love me next, I need you to know and understand things about me and my past. The things I have been though not only have shaped the person I’ve become, but also sometimes controls my life. In the past I’ve been used, abused, and taken for granted, and I want something real this time. The guys before you were just boys; they didn’t know how to treat me until it was too late. They didn’t understand how to love me, until I broke my own heart. Before you truly decide to love me I want you to understand these things.

When I tell you something, please listen.

I’m my own person, I want to be loved a certain way. If I ask you to come over and watch movies with me please do it, if I ask for you to leave me alone for a few hours because it’s a girl’s night please do it. I don’t just say things to hear my own voice, I say things to you because it’s important to my life and the way I want to be loved. I’m not a needy person when it comes to being loved and cared for, but I do ask for you to do the small things that I am say.

Forgive my past.

My past is not a pretty brick road, it is a highway that has a bunch of potholes and cracks in it. I have a lot of baggage, and most of it you won’t understand. But don’t let my past decided whether you want to love me or not. My past has helped form who I am today, but it does not define who I am. My past experiences might try and make an appearance every once in a while, but I will not go back to that person I once was, I will not return to all that hurt I once went though. When I say those things, I’m telling the complete and honest truth. I relive my past every day, somethings haunt me and somethings are good reminds. But for you to love me, I need you to accept my past, present and future.

I’m just another bro to the other guys.

I have always hung out with boys, I don’t fit in with the girl groups. I have 10 close girlfriends, but the majority of my friends are guy, but don’t let this scare you. If I wanted to be with one of my guy friends I would already be with him, and if you haven’t noticed I don’t want them because I’m with you. I will not lose my friendships with all my guy friends to be able to stay with you. I will not cut off ties because you don’t like my guy friends. I have lost too many buddies because of my ex-boyfriends and I promised myself I wouldn’t do that again. If you don’t like how many guy friends I have you can leave now. Don’t bother trying to date me if you can accept the fact I’m just another bro.

I might be a badass, but I actually have a big heart.

To a lot of people I come off to be a very crazy and wild girl. I will agree I can be crazy and wild, but I’m more than that. I’m independent, caring, responsible, understanding, forgiving, and so such more type of woman. Many people think that I’m a badass because I don’t take any negatively from anyone. Just like we learned when we were younger, “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it at all.” Most people can’t do that in today’s world, so I stick up for myself and my friends. I don’t care what anyone thinks about me, or their option on how I live my life. The only thing I care about is being able to make myself happy. Even though I’m an independent woman, understand that I do have a big heart. Honesty when I truly care for someone I will do just about anything they ask, but don’t take advantage of this. Once you take advantage of this part of me, all respect will be lost for you.

I’m hard to love.

Sometimes I want to be cuddle and get attention, and sometimes I don’t want you to talk to me for a couple hours. Sometimes I want you to take me out for a nice meal, but sometimes I want a home cooked meal. Every day is different for me, sometimes I change my mind every hour. My mood swings are terrible on certain days, and on those days you should probably just ignore me. I’m not easy to love, so you’ll either be willing to find a way to love me, or you’ll walk out like so many others have.

I’m scared.

I’m scared to love someone again. I’ve been hurt, heartbroken, and beat to the ground in my past relationships. I want to believe you are different, I want to hope things will truly work out, but every relationship has always ended up the same way. I’m scared to trust someone, put my whole heart into them, just to be left and heartbroken again. I sick and tired of putting my whole body and soul into someone for them to just leave when it is convenient for them. If you want to love me, understand it won’t be easy for me to love you back.

When “I’m done.”

When I say “I’m done” I honestly don’t mean that I’m done. When I say that it means I need and want you to fight for me, show me why you want to be with me. I need you to prove that I’m worth it and there’s no one else but me. If I was truly done, I would just walk away, and not come back. So if I ever tell you, “I’m done,” tell me all the reasons why I’m truly not done.

For the boy who will love me next, the work is cut out for you, you just have to be willing to do it. I’m not like other girls, I am my own person, and I will need to be treated as such. For the boy that will love me next, don’t bother with me unless you really want to be with me. I don’t have time to waste on you if you aren’t going to try and make something out of us. To the boy who will love me next, the last thing I would like to say is good luck, I have faith in you.

Cover Image Credit: Danielle Balint

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5 Reasons It's Always Worth It To Be A Summer Camp Counselor

Summer camps have a special place in my heart, and I'm here to share that with you.


Since I was 15, I have been a counselor at various summer camps. I have been a Program Aide at Girl Scout camp, a counselor at church camp, and a counselor at a day camp. These were all camps that I attended as a kid, so they already had a special place in my heart when I got a chance to work at them.

After being a camp counselor for five years, there are things that I have learned on the job that has helped me in life. Being a counselor has also helped me grow as a person. It's helped me gain skills that I don't think I would have learned in other jobs. I'm here to share what I love about the job of being a camp counselor.

1. You get to be the leader/role model

As a kid, there were many counselors in my life that I looked up to. They were people that I strived to be alike in my life, but now that I'm older, I get to be that person for the kid. What I say and do will influence how the kids around me act. That comes with a lot of stress, but it's also empowering. You can be a positive influence in a kids life, and hopefully, teach them important life lessons.

2. You can be your goofy self

One thing that I love about working with kids is that I can be silly around them. Kids won't judge you for being silly because they're silly right alongside you. They feed off your energy, and it can help them explore the world around them through communication. Plus, when was it not fun to be silly?

3. You get to hang out with kids all day

This reason might turn people off from the job, but it's a part of why I love being a counselor. Hanging out with kids tires me out at times, but they also motivate me to keep going. They're little balls of energy, and I feed off of other people's energies well. The kids also help me feel youthful and like nothing matters. Everything is fun to them; they help me keep a positive outlook on life.

4. Your coworkers become your best friends

Working at a summer camp can be difficult at times. It's emotionally and physically draining as well. But having a good support team helps with that. The counselors that I have worked with in the past have become my best friends, and I still stay in touch with some. They're there for you when no one else is, and they understand what you're going through. You know that their feelings for you are genuine, and they want to help as much as they can.

5. You get to watch the kids grow

Over the summer, I get to see the same kids every week at my camp. I get to see them grow as people over the summer and it's a rewarding experience knowing that I was able to help them. Watching them become leaders and grow into little helpers by the end of the summer is one of my favorite things.

I'm excited to have the opportunity to work at a summer camp again this year. I know that it'll provide an opportunity to grow as a person and I can't wait to see my favorite kids again.

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