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An Open Letter to My Sister: February Blues Aren’t That Bad


Dear Sadie,

You’re my sister, and it only feels right if I tell you a truth about college in February: it stinks. So many people will tell you this. You’ll hear about how everyone has the February blues, how the cold winter sweeps you up in the second month of the year, and how miserable you will be during it.

But, Sadie, there is something else no one will tell you about February. They won’t tell you that February doesn’t have to be as bad as it seems. They won’t tell you that February, just like life, is what you make of it.

You have a few years until you go off to college, and it’s important that you know that, like mom always says, your perspective determines your reality. That gray February day can be turned into a snowball fight or a movie night with your best girl friends. You can join a new club in February and meet new people. You can dance around your dorm room when you’re feeling down, or call mom and dad if you need a pick me up.

You can do this every day. I’m sure you know this—you’re far wiser than I. But before you head off to college, or junior year of high school, or even spring break, if there’s any advice I can give you, it’s to shift your perspective when you don’t like what you see. Earlier this year, I realized that I could choose to be happy even if I was having a bad day (and February, Sadie, is infamous for its bad days). I grew up a little because I realized that even if nothing was going my way, I could still smile, and dance, and kick life’s ass.

You’ve got twice the amount of spunk as I do and at least four times the amount of wisdom, so I think that kicking life—and February’s—butt won’t be too hard for you. You’ll face challenges with a smile on your face, and when you slip in the snow and land on your butt, you’ll get back up again, and laugh about it later.

February, like all of college, requires spunk that I know you have in you. It requires you to smile every day, and to deal with your problems straight on (and sometimes even without mom!). College is a place where you’re challenged to trust yourself. It’s a time when you decide you’re old enough to handle what the world throws you, and you learn to deal with what life throws at you. I’m sure you know this, Sadie. I’m sure you trust yourself to step out of the door in two years and onto whichever college campus will be your home.

I’m proud of you for figuring this out before I have, and for facing life head on. When I think about how much I’ve changed this year, I think about you, someone who is always tough, and knows that even when February rolls around, spring comes right after.

So yeah, Sadie, February stinks, but only if you let it. I have a pretty strong feeling that you won’t.




PS: your friends in college will not hesitate to throw snowballs at you. Watch out.

Image Credit: Lindy Wittenberg

Lindy is a current senior at Kenyon college majoring in Anthropology and Art History. She enjoys travel, books, cinema, art, food, and Scottish Whisky. Someday she hopes to travel around the world with a corgi named Max.
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