This year, the holiday season is just a little bit sweeter than all the rest. After several months of Jack being away for college, the whole family is under one roof again.
This isn’t the first time he’s come home, but it’s a much longer stay than he had during Thanksgiving. And for that I’m grateful.
Part of Jack being home is to spend time with us, his family. But he’s also been away from his friends since he left in August. As a teenager and young adult, it’s important to maintain those friendships. As much as I’d like to keep him all to myself during the holidays, I know I need to let go a bit too.
Some things we’re prioritizing while Jack is here include:
- Allowing Jack some time away to do the things he wants to do, like spending time with friends.
- Embracing new living arrangements for both Jack and Charlie. When Jack moved away, Charlie took over his much-coveted bedroom. Charlie doesn’t lose his bedroom because Jack is back; Jack will have to make do with Charlie’s old room.
- Reminding ourselves that sharing is caring. With both Jack and Charlie of driving age, they’ll have to work out for themselves how to share the car.
- Loving the laundry. That stereotypical giant haul of laundry coming home from college? I won’t complain about it at all! I’ll love doing it, knowing I won’t have to do it again for a few months.
- Seeing the pets. For many kids coming home for the holidays, they haven’t seen their pets for three or four months. This can be overwhelming for both the teens and the pets. We’ll be giving Jack extra space with Ivy as they reconnect with one another.
- Appointments, appointments, appointments. College is temporary and we don’t know where Jack will land. We’ve kept all his usual providers: doctors, dentist, barber. So this time home will include all the appointments so he’s set until his next trip home.
In addition to all of this, our family will also take a trip together so we can enjoy quality time. It’s going to be a jam-packed few weeks! But of course I’m loving watching Jack continue to grow and be more independent all while his relationship with his younger siblings continues to mature. This is such an amazing time in life!