As an eighteen-year-old senior in high school, I have recently found myself reverting back to old habits and activities, ones that I haven’t made time for in many years. It is inevitable that as we grow older, we have more and more commitments that fill our planners to the brim and stretch our to-do lists across our extra-long Post-it Notes, but this isn’t necessarily the way it should be. Far too many weekends over the past few years, I have sacrificed time spent with family and friends to work on a project or study for a test, valuable time I will never be able to get back.
However, throughout the past month, I’ve noticed that I’ve been breaking my typical habit of prioritizing school work over my free time during the weekends, largely because I have significantly more time on my hands with college applications submitted, and maybe slightly due to senioritis already plaguing me. Regardless, I’m not complaining. Not only do I feel more energized and refreshed going into Monday, but I also feel like I’ve reconnected with my younger self and re-established traditions that have always been so important to my family and me.
I recently went skiing with my family, something we haven’t done all together in so long. As the day continued on and we regained our steady ski legs, we began to race, chasing each other to the bottom as the sun set behind the mountain, just like old times. The following weekend, we took a day trip to our favorite spot in Maine. Just like old times, we wandered through L.L. Bean, grabbed a lobster roll at the best seaside shack around, and drove along the icy coastline in hopes of spotting a seal or two. Both weekends were so fun and so comforting to me–I felt like a child again and escaped the stress of BB&N academics.
Lastly, I recently visited Concord center with my parents. As a child, we would always take road trips to explore new places and try new restaurants, so having yet to visit the quintessential New England town center, we decided to explore once again. We stumbled upon a specialty shop with the best chocolate and nuts one could ever have; since then, we have already returned twice to restock our supply.
Knowing that I will be going off to college in such a short amount of time, I’ve set a goal to continue doing activities like this to ground myself and enjoy my time after working so hard for so long. I wish I could go back in time and tell underclassman Tess to take more time off and enjoy her weekends, so instead, I will encourage all the current underclassmen to take this advice and run with it. Take a break from your homework this coming Sunday and reconnect with your loved ones, or treat yourself to a self-care day instead. You deserve it.