I elaborately planned out this past weekend for when my parents would fly into town to come visit me in my first year of college. We were going to take a tour (led by yours truly) of the campus, watch an a capella concert, and go into downtown to explore Chicago.
We didn’t really do any of that.
The reality was that my mom had flown in from overseas and was very jetlagged, and I had just begun to catch a cold the day before they arrived. I was coughing and sputtering all throughout the weekend, but that didn’t make it any less enjoyable.
The moment I saw them was truly wonderful. At college, we all see our peers as individuals who just appeared on this earth, instead of who they are, the children of mothers and fathers whose parenting methods shaped the way they are today.
I had long forgotten where I was from and had come to call college home. Though it’s great to find a sense of familiarity in a campus in such short time, I think it’s important to me to constantly be aware of my background and apply it to my everyday life here in college.
I spent two hours cleaning my room. It was the neatest it had been since I first moved in, and it was warming, comforting, inviting, and most importantly, it smelled good.
I told all my friends just how excited I was to see them, because I had much to discuss with them. Phone calls and Skype sessions do serve some value, but nothing beats face-to-face discussions over good food.
We hopped in a car (that was great) and drove over to Chinatown, away from a community dominated by young adults and into a street known for its great dimsum restaurants.
I’d missed Chinese food sorely, the authentic kind that only came from reputed restaurants on Cermak and Wentforth.
I also decided to stay with my parents in the hotel that they had booked, which ended up being a great decision. I’d recently become rather bored with the routine of going out to parties every weekend. I went to sleep before midnight both days and didn’t give a shit about what parties were happening that weekend, or what the score of the game was, or what drama went down where.
Most importantly, I sat down with my parents and talked about the future. I’d forgotten how talkative my mom could be, and how aloof my dad could be. Over the weekend, we probably talked a combined seven hours about academics and majors and how I might allocate my time at this school for the next few years.
I missed my parents. It was overall, a great weekend that was a well-deserved break in the chaotic yet routine life I’d been leading for the past few weeks.
Don’t get me wrong. I love college, a lot more than I liked high school. I just have a tendency to get lost in the monotony of everyday life, and Family Weekend ruptured that monotony.
The only thing that would have made it better? My sister.