Before I left for Christmas break from school, I had a professor tell me that it was going to be the weirdest thing ever to go back home for this long. She warned me it wouldn’t feel the same, and that I’d feel different.
Boy, was she right.
I didn’t realize how much just one semester of college had changed how I view the world and who I am. I was no longer the little girl who grew up in Graham, Washington. I wasn’t the high-schooler who went to a community college. I lived in Oregon now. And while Graham will always be my home, I’m different now.
It’s also kind of cool to see how things have changed. I got to meet up with old friends I hadn’t seen in years, and I reconnected with old sights I used to hang out in (before I had a job).
But I knew this year was going to be hard, because my best friend wasn’t going to be there to share the holidays with me.
Boy, was I wrong.
I wasn’t the most excited for the holiday season or to go home. Almost any one of my friends could have told you so. But I got the surprise of a lifetime.
My boyfriend came home from basic training and proposed.
Yep, I was caught completely unaware when they revealed that he was home and waiting for me. They set up a huge scavenger hunt and at the end he was there in uniform on one knee. I, of course, didn’t even see the box he was holding; I just tackled him to the ground and cried.
After the emotional breakdown, I finally got to say “yes” to marrying him. To being by his side for the rest of my life. And it is the happiest day of my life thus far.
Those two weeks he spent with me were heaven. I got to spend Christmas with him and his family, and we got to run around together just like we were in high school again. But of course, all good things must come to an end. And he had to go back to basic January third.
While that day was hard, I realize that it is only a month until he graduates from basic and he will be allowed to love normally. And that will make everything much easier.
After he left, my schedule didn’t slow down, and it still didn’t feel any less weird. But sadly, my emergency break was pulled as I got the flu at the very end of Christmas vacation. I took one day of rest and then kept on going to lunches with friends and packing to go back home to Oregon.
So yeah, this break was weird and amazing and special in ways I couldn’t even explain. I wouldn’t trade going home this break for anything in the world.
And I guess I also should try and be more positive, because you never know what’s going to happen.