Here comes that time again, “the most wonderful time of year;” it’s finally time for the holidays. Whether you choose to celebrate your cultural holidays, you still cannot help yourself getting into high spirits about the fall semester finally coming to an end and getting ready for all the gift giving and receiving. However, for very little it is bitter sweet as it is the last semester for a few seniors. Some anticipate going home to our families after going some time without seeing them, but others, like myself, have the opportunity to be with their family every day.
Every day I’m reminded of the misfortunes of life; you need to give a little to get a little. In the middle of the summer, I was faced with the decision to live on campus this semester with my friends for my last three months at Manhattanville, or live at home to help my family as we all grieve the loss of my father. I chose to live at home, and commute for the semester because at the end of the day, family is the most important thing you can have in life; no family is perfect and they do not have to be blood to be considered family. I have never looked back at this decision because there was never a day that I did not need my mom, brother, Uncle, Aunt’s, Grandparents, or Cousins. Through this decision, I gained more love for my family as they have been the ones that have gotten me through every day with the constant reminders that endless love exists in this world, even if it doesn’t feel that way at the moment.
We often always get lost in the holiday’s instead of remembering the reasons we celebrate them. It is a joyful time of year; we sit amongst our loved ones to celebrate getting through all the misfortunes and being able to rise above all that has happened. It is not about the presents under the tree; it is about the time spent with your family putting together the tree and decorations. If all we think about are the material objects that we anticipate receiving, are we really in the right holiday mindset? Someone once told me that they do not give gifts to their loved ones on Christmas because it is not about the presents that they more than likely won’t remember in years to come; it is about creating new memories with her loved ones that will remember forever.
As we all end our semester, we need to remember that we are going home to love. During my time as a resident, I always remember jogging to my car while on the phone with one parent at a time to tell them I was finally finished for the semester and that I would be home within the next few hours. There was never once a year I came home that my mom was not waiting for me at the door, asking my brother to run outside because I was home and needed help bringing my stuff upstairs for the month break between semesters. She always had our “first meal” back together ready for when I was home, and the following night would be my special family dinner with my dad and grandparents. Now as a commuter, I highly doubt that I will get that special treatment, but I know that nevertheless she has something planned to celebrate the end of the semester. I am thankful for all the support that this year has brought, and I am looking forward to being surrounded by my family with unconditional love this Christmas and New Year. Happy Holidays to everyone!