This year for Thanksgiving I brought two of my good friends home with me. They both live out West and couldn’t make it home for the holiday. My family celebrates Thanksgiving at my grandparent’s lake house in Vermont and had a full house with 17 people crowded around our table this year.
Having two college friends staying in my childhood home was a strange collision of worlds. They saw the childhood pictures of my mom that hang in the hallway, saw my 10-year-old handwriting written on the bunk room walls, even saw the stair I broke my foot on at the first party I ever hosted. Even stranger was introducing my family to my school life. They had a chance to meet some of my school friends, got to see the kind of people I now spend all my time with.
I was constantly worried about what my friends would think of my family, what my family would think of my friends. In the end, everyone got along extremely well, my friends managed to hold their own against my loud and bold family, and my family loved my friends. While I know I had nothing to worry about, introducing two parts of my life to each other was oddly empowering. It reminded me of why I chose to attend Brandeis, why I am proud of the friends I have made here, and how thankful I am for my family and their ability to welcome my friends so wholeheartedly into their holiday.
The strangest part of the whole week was leaving to drive back to school. Saying goodbye to my relatives gets harder for me during the holiday season. But as we drove away, I wasn’t alone like I have been when returning to school in the past, I had two of my closest friends with me.
While hosting on vacation can be stressful, it was well worth it to give my friends a home away from home, and to be reminded of how lucky I am to have such incredible people in my life.