Will the real Spring Break please stand up?

Spring Break.

Two little words that bring one thing to mind when it comes to college kids.

Image from this article. Yes, the students in this photo appear to be having a nice time, but they are clearly making questionable decisions when it comes to skin protection, among other things.

Even though that beach, and other beaches, are really crowded this time of year with groups of guys and girls letting off steam and pushing limits, a slew of kids are home. Like my son, they’re hanging out with old friends, grabbing burgers from In ‘N Out, flopping on the couch, teasing their sister who still has homework and class and softball practice, and making their parents wildly happy to have everyone under the same roof again, if only for a few short days.

The In ‘N Out drive through — our first stop on the way home from the airport.

They’re interviewing for summer jobs, making phone calls to past mentors, getting some writing done, binge-watching TV and playing with the dog.

They are taking a break at home because school is A LOT. Especially come Spring, when you have to think about who to live with next year and how to pull up the grades in that class where the professor just doesn’t get you and why that girl never texted you back and how you’re going to make your spending allowance last until June and all the regular stuff that just happens and right about now it’s just good to be in a place where those things are still true but don’t feel so important.

It’s perfect that the cookies are fresh on the counter, and not sitting in a box in the post office, and Mom isn’t just in the mail, she’s right down the hall*.

Chocolate Chip Cookies from Mom in the Mail

Someday, soon even, Spring Break will be about travel and adventure and new things again, like it was when the kids were younger and we used this time as a family to escape the ruts and routines of work and life around the house. He’ll explore new cities, volunteer, roam around with his roommates or escape to a cabin with someone he’s fallen for, hard. Perhaps he will even find himself burned to a crisp and getting trashed on a beach.**

But at least for now, while he, and a ton of other kids like him, are still figuring this college stuff out***, Spring Break is about coming home.

*Not hovering or anything. Just handy in a non-intrusive way.

** God, I hope not. Such a bad idea.

*** Or, in the words of my son, “Killin’ it, Mom. I’m killin’ college.” In some instances, your child may not explicitly acknowledge the need for a restorative visit.

Note: This is excerpted from a post previously published on my company blog.