In high school, the promise of summer break being right around the corner was one of the most exhilarating feelings. In college, summer breaks means being separated from your friends for three months and returning to your hometown, only to find that it's not nearly as exciting as it was when you were 16. That's when the countdown begins. We wait for summer days to drift into summer nights so that we can wait for the next day to melt into the next and the next until it's time to pack our things and make the drive back to school. We turn a blind eye to the good of summer, but it deserves to be celebrated.
Summer gave you the opportunity to spend time with your family. Rather than having to talk on the phone to tell them about your day, you got to go out and actually spend the day with them. You got to come back and make the house feel whole again. You got to spend late nights with your mom to talk about things you only seem to think about after 1 a.m. You got to hug your dad when he came home from work. Be thankful for the time spent with the people who love you the most.
Summer gave you the opportunity to get a job. Maybe you got to work somewhere that reassured you that the major you've been pursuing is definitely the one for you. Maybe you just got a job to make some money for the upcoming school year. Either way, you learned that hard work is rewarding.
Summer gave you the opportunity to travel. Whether you took a family vacation to Washington D.C. or studied abroad in Italy, you got to see a part of the world that you had yet to explore. The stressful college world separates you from the adventures that are out there, and the summer break allows you to discover and fall completely in love with new places.
Summer gave you the opportunity to reconnect. Once the graduation caps were thrown into the air to celebrate a new beginning, life changed. Friends moved away, and even though you "promised to call each other every night", life got busy. Once you moved to your college town, slowly but surely, you met the people you have claimed as your bridesmaids and friends for life. However, no matter how distant college made you become, your high school friends will always be an important part of your life, and summer gave you the chance to relive the high school memories with the people that helped you make them.
Summer gave you the opportunity to relax. I'm not sure if you've noticed this, but college can be overwhelming. Even if you have time before studying for the next big exam, you still have other responsibilities to take care of, and you can sometimes feel like there isn't enough time in the world. Summer gave you the chance to breathe and appreciate what it means to be still.
So quit hating on your college summers. Yeah, college is fun, but quit wishing for time to move forward because you can't get it back. Before you know it, you will be employed with adult responsibilities (sorry if I'm freaking you out, but it's true), and summer vacation will be nonexistent. These are the times to remember, so be thankful and make them count.