Over the last few weeks I’ve had a lot of alone time, in fact more than I would typically like. Just like any other college student I’ve spent more than a few nights binge-watching shows on Netflix. This got me thinking, what am I doing? Did I seriously just waste 6 hours (don’t judge, you know you’ve done it too) watching a TV show that I am in no way invested in, and I stay up until ungodly hours to watch it just for something to do? I realize my mistake in a fully conscious state the next morning and resolve to instead read a book the next time, journal, read my Bible, sketch, or listen to music. The plan has been made and I will follow through, I mean it’s so easy to keep my computer closed and choose a number of other great options.
The next night comes and here’s my opportunity. I think to myself FOR SPARTA!!! That’s about my only self-motivation technique left since I used up everything else during finals and over the holidays. It’s been a long day now it’s time to wind down. Well that got me thinking about the movie 300, which got me thinking about Gladiator. I wonder if that’s on Netflix! So what do I do – that’s right, Netflix always wins. You could say I am currently in a relationship with Netflix. Those shirts that say Sorry I can’t go out tonight. I have a date with Netflix or how about Relationship Status? Netflix, pizza, and sweatpants – these are me, I am this, it is all the same this winter break. It’s really not a bad life at least I get fed. What I’ve learned through all of this is that although this relaxation technique may not be the best, some time to rest my mind is ok. Although I could be spending my time rereading the classics this break – To Kill a Mockingbird, Jane Eyre, Lord of the Flies (please Lawd no), The Odyssey (throwback to freshman year of highschool), or my personal favorite Lord of the Rings – I don’t need to.
As college students we need a break as most of us have spent our time the past 5 months doing only school work or working a real job if like me you never wait till the last minute, have no social life, haven’t joined any other activities, hate the outdoors, and absolutely can’t stand talking to people. Ha. But really, in reality we need even more of a break because we’re burnt out. As we get older we will hopefully be able to combat this in better ways by going to sleep instead of going long boarding at 11pm or playing soccer at midnight. We will become those boring old folks with jobs who earn their livings and have wonderful family and friends who are willing to compromise and have dinner parties and eat well instead of eating raw ramen. We will be grownups, living in the working class and hopefully loving what we do.
I for one am not ready for those days yet. I still want to stay up late and swim in fountains in the middle of the night and go on ice cream runs way too late and talk to my friends in the freezing cold until 6am when we have an 8 o’clock class that morning. So for now I am going to let myself be a child for once. I’m allowed to have my moments of insanity. Although this semester I’ve been going to sleep earlier and making my own food (that’s right I have a farm in my kitchen-cows and chickens, the whole shebang) and working on my communication skills, I am still 19 years old. I may not be a freshman anymore, but I’m not in the adult world yet. Even as an adult I don’t want to feel boring. I like adventure and I like having fun. One of my favorite people is 70 years old just had a shoulder replaced and still wants to travel the world, she laughs as much as I do, and is even more outgoing because she has the time in which to do it.
I may not be ready to kiss mommy and daddy goodbye and take care of myself. One day I’ll get there or they’ll throw me to the curb, but even when that time comes I bet I’ll still choose to be a little immature.
As an only child I’ve lived in the adult world my entire life, so it’s time to make some mistakes of my own. When my dad said goodbye this year he handed me some cash and said, “Be reckless, will ya? Stay up all night and goof off, ok?” You could say I have the best parents ever – because it’s true but my point is that whether you have supportive parents or not you have to have fun and make friends – while trying not to gain the freshman 15 from one thing or another or just gain weight from gettin old.
From me to you – spend the last days or week(s) of break relaxing. The semester is about to hit full-force for some of us and for others maybe it’s going to be finding a job or living in our parent’s homes again or maybe a career change. Maybe your break has already ended, but don’t forget to take a break. We all burn out because we’re not robots. We’re not perfect and we don’t always know how to handle things. So take a deep breath while your Netflix account is loading, because it’s time to detox our brains with all that information and temporarily go into a coma.