On December 20th, I went home for the holidays and began a 10 day visit. This is my first Christmas going back home after moving away. Last year, I moved back at Christmas and didn’t leave again until May, so I feel it didn’t count. This one was different. I knew I had a short period of time to spend with everyone I love during the most chaotic holiday of the year.
My anxiety was a disaster leading up to my trip home. My boyfriend was in Toronto playing shows, I was experiencing my first session of trauma therapy, and it’s cold and flu season (I have a terrible phobia of stomach bugs) which threw me completely over the edge.
Landing in SK felt good – minus the cold. I immediately connected with family and friends. The next day, my boyfriend joined me and thus began our race back and forth from Regina to Moose Jaw to accommodate our visiting schedule. It’s always nice being home with my boyfriend as we connect more closely with each other’s loved ones – both family and friends. There were so many people I didn’t get to see though. I wish I could have had more time and then again, I was so happy to leave and come back to a humid and tolerable climate.
It’s funny what happens when you move away. Where I come from, the pressure to stay in touch and keep relationships is solely on the moved individual. I noticed that the only people I really stay in touch with are the ones who also make an effort to keep in touch with me. It goes both ways and although long distance relationships, in any sense of the phrase, can be difficult, the effort has to come from both ends to be successful. This was learning tip #1.
Learning tip #2 was not to over commit. I made so many plans prior to arriving. When I was there, I felt that I couldn’t do everything I had planned. Between my disaster of emotions, to sheer time constraints, I wasn’t able to fulfill my promises. Next year, I am making zero plans.
No matter what you have learned or who you have grown to be while you’ve been away counts for jack shit when you come home. Perhaps it’s just my home, but I noticed that who you were is who you are and who you will always be. It’s tough when people who you haven’t spoken to in years judge you based on who you were a year ago, or even a month ago. This was learning tip #3.
Learning tip #4, things never change. I suppose that’s in direct contradiction with learning tip #3. But there is something to be said about things legit not changing back home. Sometimes it’s a tradition that deserves to die. Other times it’s a person who stays in a bubble of safety. Regardless, it’s annoying and great reassurance as to why you’ve made the decisions that you have.