So much pressure is placed on your last week at home before leaving home as a college freshman. Whether you are a plane ride or a short bus ride from home, you feel it. You make countless plans with close friends and old acquaintances because you need to say goodbye to absolutely everybody you've ever met. You need to say "goodbye," and "thank you," and "I'll see you soon," and "you've made an incredible impact on me." You need to say everything and you need to say it to everybody because you truly don't know the next time your paths will cross even though each goodbye you give is paired with a promise to text, FaceTime, call, and Snapchat every day. The reality that no one wants to face in this time of goodbyes that college will be a whirlwind and that keeping in touch is a lot harder than we all anticipate. Keeping up a relationship is so much more than a daily Snapchat streak and it's so easy to get caught up and just forget.
Not only do we feel the pressure of cramming so many goodbyes into a short seven days, made even harder by factoring in everybody else's equally busy schedules, but we feel the need to make every last day an adventure. The reality of leaving gives us the extra motivation to finally make good on our plans for the summer. We want to do it all-go to that popular place in the city, eat out with friends every night, stay up later and later to make the last moments really count.
What is easy to overlook is that friend time and epic goodbyes needs to be balanced. This is also your last week with your parents and your siblings. It's the last week of home-cooked meals with all of your favorites on the menu. It's the last week having a quiet house and a bedroom to yourself. It's the last week of luxuriously long showers and perfect wifi connection. It's also a week of running crazy last minute errands and making checklists and packing. It's seemingly impossible to get everything done once it hits you that this really is the last week and your time at home starts to dwindle faster and faster.
What really makes for the best last week is not outrageous adventures and parties and seeing absolutely everyone. What truly makes the best last week is spending it like any other. Sure it sounds great to have so many last blasts packed into one week, but it's really a mundane end that you end up craving. You want your favorite home cooked meals, you want more time with your true best friends and not be worried about everybody, you want those quiet, calm minutes in your house.
A mundane, regular week really is the best way to spend your last couple of days at home. Go to your favorite restaurant with your family, get Bob's Mac & Cheese every day because you're gonna miss having it weekly, watch Netflix with your best friend, play board games with your sister, hug your parents and thank them nonstop.
Obviously the last week comes with so many emotional moments and lasts, but there's no need for added pressure when what you really will appreciate the most and miss the most is the comfort of home and being surrounded by everything so familiar. Enjoy the regularity and calm of it all because that will be what best sums up your eighteen years at home.