For many, going home for Easter is a shock to the system. The independence you’ve got accustomed to is suddenly gone, replaced by ever-present parents who refuse to knock on your bedroom door before entering. As the days at home pass, I gradually morph back into a bratty 16 year old. I even surprised myself last Christmas when, upon being denied a lift to a friend’s house, I stamped my foot, screaming ‘it’s not fair’ and then proceeded to slam the front door so hard a pane of glass fell out. Just too predictable. I have found that a few things make the transition from university to home easier.
For instance, I try to remember that it is not acceptable to lie in until two in the afternoon. In fact, last Easter my mum noticed that I never got up before eleven o’clock and was so worried about me that she left a pile of self-help books on my bedside table. At the time, this was incredibly annoying but now I see going home as an opportunity to right my (very wrong) sleeping pattern.
Another thing to remember is that drinking culture is different at home than at university. In my house, alcohol is to be sipped and my parents would be less than impressed if I strawpedoed a bottle of wine over dinner. It will make your life easier if you try to keep your impressive drinking abilities on the down low… or dash into the toilet to film yourself doing it and send it to your uni friends. They’ll be proud.
I always find it hard at home to stick to a study plan. The kitchen table is no substitute for the studious sanctuary of the ASSL, and I too often find myself watching re-runs of Jeremy Kyle instead of reading Chaucer. With end of year exams looming, this lack of concentration turns to guilt that gradually niggles away at you, until you realise you are three weeks behind on revision. Then comes a full-blown panic. I find the best way to avoid this situation is to get out of the house. Find a café near where you live and turn it into your own ASSL for the day. Alternatively, find your nearest library and work there. I also try to meet up with friends from home who are also at university and form a study group. However, this runs the risk of turning into an almighty catch-up session and any prospect of studying might just go out the window.
Whilst going home for Easter is a shock to the system, it is not without its perks. For instance, after experiencing living off toast and noodles for days on end, I now really appreciate my parents’ home cooking. Another fantastic thing about going home is that parents often do the laundry. At university, it seems to be a constant bother – a friend once admitted that he turns his pants inside out and wears them again to prevent washing them. I apologise for the disturbing, if not extremely disgusting, image this conjures up.
Above all, the best thing about going home is that you’ll get to see your home friends and family – the difficulties in adjusting from university life to home life soon become insignificant