Disclaimer: So I just read Nate and Annie's posts from the other day, and coincidentally we have all been thinking about the same kind of things lately. Maybe it’s because I miss seeing my best friends everyday, or maybe him and I are just, as Nate referred to it in his last post, becoming Sentimental Seniors; but I’ve also done a lot of thinking about what it means to truly be “home” these past few months, and so I thought I’d share a few of these thoughts with you.
I have to say that being home for the summer, especially after loving your past year at college can be a weird feeling and a hard thing to process. You’re stuck somewhere between unpacking to find everything you need for the summer and not wanting to unpack because you’re just leaving in 3 months again anyways, right?
To start, here are 4 of my thoughts on moving home for the summer:
- Unpack – You don’t want to live out of boxes for 3 months and by the time you go back to school, you aren’t going to want to bring the same things back to school anyways. Which brings me to part 2:
- Get rid of the junk – If you’re like me, there were probably at least 5 outfits you brought to school at the beginning of the year and never even touched after you hung them up on move-in day. It’s time to find them a new home. Stop keeping them because you “might” wear them if your Great Aunt Rose brings her dog to visit in September and you want to go out to tea. Sorry friends, that is probably not happening. (However, if you have a Great Aunt Rose that does come and visit you in September, let me know. I will totally buy your tea.)
- Take a couple deep breaths – Things are going to be different than when you were at college. You’re going to miss your friends, your independence, the community (yes, it’s a real thing), and just the campus in general, but your family misses you all year-round, give them some respect and attention. Don’t spend the whole time moping about what you don't have and try to remember what you do.
- Stay busy but remember, this is supposed to be a vacation – This summer I decided to rip off the Band Aid and take 4 online classes and work full time. If you are considering this option, let me make one suggestion: ABORT MISSION. I do not suggest this course of action haha. But instead, plan a vacation with those friends you miss so much – or plan a vacation to go see those friends (I’ve got my trip to Michigan on the calendar for August!), make a new workout plan (Guys, I bought a bike!), grab some coffee with some old friends you haven’t connected with in a while (They might even invite you to their weddings, and who doesn’t love weddings?), get involved with your church or youth group (Go on a mission trip to Houston, Texas!), your options are endless!
I think that “home” is where the people love you and you feel content, and you know what else I think that means? I think that means that you can have more than one home. I would personally say I have two homes.
The first is my physical house where my family lives. I am a family person and there’s not much I like more than coming home to a big hug from my mom.
The second, as cheesy as those of you who haven’t experienced this yet may think this sounds, is the people of Dordt College. Even as a transfer student, Dordt opened up its doors and its community to me and I am so thankful! I feel so at home with my teammates, with my roommates, with my friends, I can’t even describe the leap of joy my heart takes as I drive down 7th Street to pull back onto campus.
As I think about having to make one last “move-in day” happen in August, I am flooded with emotions. (Nate, I don’t know, I think I’ve hit the Sentimental stage.) I’m filled with excitement for all the memories I am going to have the chance to make over the next year. I am nostalgic as I remember all I’ve experienced walking through campus. I am nervous about what the future may hold for me, but deep down I am also comforted. I am comforted because I know the Dordt Life doesn’t end when I walk across that stage next May. After visiting a Sioux Falls Alumni Chapter picnic last week I am sure that this is true. There are Dordt graduates on both coasts, in every state, and in many countries throughout the world. I am comforted by this fact because I know there will always be a piece of my home wherever I might end up. But primarily, I am content because I know that God’s got this; it is He who knows my past and it is He who holds my future.
As we all begin to think about entering into a time of transition again with the nearing of the start of school, I pray that we hold fast to the assurance that comes when we wholeheartedly rely on the one who holds our whole heart.
Exodus 33:12-14 Moses said to the LORD, "See, you say to me, 'Bring up this people,' but you have not let me know whom you will send with me. Yet you have said, 'I know you by name, and you have also found favor in my sight.' Now therefore, if I have found favor in your sight, please show me now your ways, that I may know you in order to find favor in your sight. Consider too that this nation is your people." And he said, "My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest."