“Dear Aunty, I hate that being home for Christmas means babysitting duty and going to bed at 10pm. I miss stumbling back from the club at 4am and waking up in someone else’s kitchen. How do I enjoy the Christmas holidays when I’d rather be with my friends?”
Christmas is a difficult time of year for many. There is a huge expectation placed upon Christmas being the most wonderful time of the year when in reality, spending time with family members can be stressful. Especially when grandma mistakes gaining weight for a pregnancy and there are arguments between siblings over hot chocolate (I may or may not be speaking from experience!)
The biggest piece of advice I can give you is to look after yourself during this festive period. And I don’t mean that in a bubble bath and candles kind of way – although Christmas is the ultimate excuse for a spa night in. What I mean is make sure that you are being kind to yourself and setting boundaries that respect your mental health.
As the queen of seasonal activities, I have some suggestions on how to make the most of the festive season. Whether you celebrate the turning of the seasons, Hanukkah, or whatever else, there is always a reason to decorate your home with pretty lights, snowflakes and paper chains. Being home has the added benefit of having your meals cooked for you, and your laundry magically appears clean again. It’s not very often that a uni student has this luxury!
I understand that coming home, especially after a long time away, can be a bit of a culture shock. However, if your family loves you enough to welcome you back, I’m sure you can enjoy giving a little back by helping peel carrots for the Christmas dinner, or smile and nod when nana tells the same story four times. Even if you’d much rather be somewhere else, it’s worth thinking about the fact that not everyone gets to go back home for the holidays and spend time with their loved ones. So make the most of the opportunity! Chances are, you’ll miss it at least a little when you’re back at uni.
You could also spend your holidays earning some much needed Circuit Laundry funds. Supermarkets are always looking for seasonal temps. If your sleeping schedule is still stuck on uni mode – night shifts pay extra!
If all else fails, remember that it’s only for a few weeks and soon you’ll be back to the sticky floors of Salvos and eating tuna pasta five nights in a row!
Hang in there, and happy holidays!